Hi BP Community - I'm looking for a great attorney / CPA in Los Angeles. Someone who's smart and experienced please!
I have read so many posts on BP asking for a great CPA in their area and unfortunately they can be hard to find sometimes if you need someone local. If you are open to working with someone virtually, your options increase. I also have seen many posts that indicate you should find someone that you have a good connection with. Although this is important, please also consider the below:
1. CPA Credential: There are many accountants that do not have the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) credential even though they may prepare tax returns and/or provide other accounting services. I think this credential is critical because it indicates that your accountant has a formal education, experience and knowledge that is critical to fulfilling your accounting/tax needs. I am guessing you would not use a doctor without ever going top medical school or passing the medical boards, right?
2. Business Adviser: Your CPA should be more then a numbers cruncher or someone that can put numbers on a form. There are many people who can successfully fill out a tax return or tell you how 2 + 2 = 4. However, there are not many CPAs that can see the "Big Picture", create tax strategies that will substantially reduce a tax liability, etc. I would strongly recommend you work with someone that can help you create "outside the box" tax AND business strategies.
3. Well rounded: Your accountant should be familiar with real estate taxation, but it is equally important that your accountant has a general understanding on other types of accounting/tax issues as well (i.e. bookkeeping, individual taxation, estate/gift tax issues, etc.). I have helped so many clients that I had to clean up their books and/or have missed deductions that are not related to their real estate investing.
The above are only a few items that you should definitely consider alongside years of experience, pricing, responsiveness, etc.
I hope this helps!
Are you open to working with an accountant remotely?
I would prioritize finding an accountant who specializes in real estate taxation over one that is local.
There are 20+ accountants on this message board who specialize in real estate taxation. Feel free to reach out to a couple and use the one you connect with the most.
Thanks @Melody and @Basit!
The reason why I'm looking for someone local with broad experience is because I also have other business ventures like a media company and other investments that need to be addressed as well, not just real estate. I also tried 1800accountant, which was absolutely terrible and turned me off to the idea of remote.