Is it common for an attorney to be competent in the areas of business, accounting, tax, AND real estate? Since I'm new to rehabs and subject to deals, I feel that paying for professional guidance up front will teach me good habits which will profit me later on, but who do I hire? -please don't say all of them! :`( Do you know anyone that can help me with the following?
- Develop a business plan and include licensing advice specific to Utah, specific to rehabs, rentals, and subject to deals, and specific to a new small business owner in my tax bracket.
- Analyze my strategy and tell me what is cost effective and what is not.
- Develop deal contracts and helping me see them through.
Ideally, I would have 3 or 4 references to attorneys skilled in all areas, but that may not be possible.
Thanks for your thoughts.
I use a guy in Ohio who is both a lawyer and tax accountant and who specializes in real estate, so yes, you can find a "combo packages" as it were.
Although I'd guess that you're probably not going to find one person who can do all that you've mentioned above.
It sounds to me like you're looking for two pretty separate things, really: 1) a business advisor/mentor, and 2) a legal/tax advisor. A lawyer probably isn't the best person to tell you how to develop a business plan for real estate- they're in the law business, after all, not the real estate biz ;) To know what are effective strategies requires being directly active in the business.
You may well be able to garner enough info here on BP to help you with your items #1 and #2 above.
@Josiah Halverson , my answer to your question is no. There are a few attorneys who do taxes, accounting and law, but very very few. The few I know who still do all of those mostly do tax litigation.
In order to do a job really well requires some specialization. The Dr. who delivers babies does not do heart surgery and vice a versa. Nearly every Dr. could probably give care to someone who broke their arm and is waiting for an ambulance. Running a business to the best of my knowledge is completely unrelated to the practice of law. You will probably need to get a professional in the business field to do most of the things you asked about, ie. analyze your strategy, do cost analysis, etc. You need an accountant to help choose your business entity. You can probably spend 30 minutes talking to your local city licensing center on what licensing you need. You probably need an experienced contractor too. Good luck.
@Jerry W. is right. I'm lucky enough to have found a good attorney that does taxes and knows the laws for them both. He does my closings, taxes, and evictions, along with other misc things.
Do not feel like you need to use someone local. Many of us accountants have clients worldwide. Payroll, bookkeeping, etc can mostly be done remotely.
Here is a great list of questions to ask a potential accountant:http://www.biggerpockets.com/forums/51/topics/70447-questions-to-ask-a-cpa
Also check out the www.NAEA.org page in your search. It should help you find someone local. If someone comes to me, I'll send them your way.
If you need help in your search or want to verify something don't hesitate to ask.
I have clients worldwide and things are just as easy as I e-mail them, talking on the phone. I even use Skype and TeamViewer to communicate with clients so I'd highly recommend looking for one of the best with great references that interviews well with you. So look for someone you can connect with that works out for your situation.