Annual taxes can be complicated, frustrating, or require knowledge that the average citizen simply doesn’t have. Yet, many of us still choose online companies like TurboTax or H&R Block instead of seeking a professional accounting firm or an online CPA. Some are brave enough to try it themselves and simply work through the IRS complexities. But are you missing out on a better refund? What is the best route for you? And, should you use a CPA for your annual taxes?
Marketing Popular Companies
Through the magic of marketing, many companies like TurboTax convince us that we don’t need to know much about the tax process. Instead, these companies allow us to input our information and be on our way. Although they certainly make the process easier, they are doing us a disservice. We aren’t learning about taxes, and we aren’t receiving the customer service we deserve. If you have a question or concern, you’re either out of luck or must pay more.
The average citizen doesn’t have a lot to file when it comes to taxes. If you don’t fall into the “complicated taxes” category, then you can get away with using something like H&R Block or even just the IRS website. But, in the process, you could lose money on your refund. In 2018, 80% of filers missed an essential step, which may have affected their rebate. That’s why using a CPA firm that provides customer service, and education, might be worth the expense.
CPA and Accounting Firms
Another route you can take is to file your taxes through an accounting firm. The main perk of using a CPA is that you have access to professionals who live and breathe taxes and are available to help you face-to-face or over-the-phone. And if you miss the convenience of programs like TurboTax, you can use an online CPA like our firm, Sickler, Tarpey & Associates. Our offices are in Tyrone, Pennsylvania, but we work online with clients across the country and the world.
Education and Customer Service
Let’s take TurboTax as an example. If you’re using the paid version for both federal and state taxes, you’re going to pay about $175. That’s a significant fee for an online company that gives you no customer service. To keep our rates competitive, we match that fee at Sickler, Tarpey & Associates, yet we provide education and personalized service.
When you use an online CPA firm, you’re not just a number or one of the thousands. You're an essential part of someone's business, and you get one-on-one, individualized attention so you can gain the most from your taxes. Our accounting firm walks you through the process, whether you have one job and no kids or several business partners and many dependents.
We often like to categorize ourselves into two cases: complicated or straightforward. Someone who’s a simple tax case might be a single person who has one job and rents an apartment. A complicated situation might be a married couple with several children, businesses, and homes. So we assume only “complicated” taxes need a CPA. At our accounting firm, we believe that everyone can benefit from professional help.
Because of this belief, we offer an online CPA at affordable rates (comparable to TurboTax). We don’t want you to be one of the 80% who might lose money on your return. We want the opposite! We help you find other refunds or deductions so that you’re in the best financial situation possible. And, along the way, we want you to understand your taxes so that you can take any necessary steps throughout the year to enhance your finances and taxes.