How to Interview a CPA and BookKeeper

4 Replies

Hi all, 

I wanted to throw out this question to see what advice I can get. I'm trying to work on my interview skills, but frankly I've never been that great with coming up with good questions. I found a local "bookkeeper" who works with CPAs in the office (for taxes etc) that I'd like to check out. 

Does anyone have experience with this type of service, and is there anything I should ask specifically related to the bookkeeping aspect? How has a bookkeeper helped you? What are your preferred book keeping methods if not a professional?

Here is my list of questions for the interview:
1) Fees - general

2) Tax Season (How soon do you start, what is the turn around, what are the fees)

3) Experience with real estate income, rental properties, notes, SD IRA investments.

4) Experience with 1031 exchanges, other tax advantaged income strategies

5) Availability (if I call or e-mail, what is the response time)

6) Security and accessibility (how are files stored-paper/electronic/cloud etc)

Thanks in advance!


That's a nice outline of points to discuss. Regarding the bookkeeping, you might want to see if they provide software training and troubleshooting to clients that opt to keep their own books.

@JoDell Walker

Excellent list already! I would add in things that are popular in REI, but obscure to the "normal" world to test just how experienced in real estate they are.

An excellent example of this is asking about wholesaling. A real estate bookkeeper will know what this means. A pretender will think you’re talking about “normal” wholesaling in a retail shop/manufacturing environment. It’s an excellent trick to weed out the unworthy :)

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