Before Becoming Harold

In the time I’ve spent working for an accounting firm, there’s a regular occurrence that happens around here. A client calls to tell us about a big decision he’s just made but is running into some snags. Let’s call this client Harold. Harold has gone off and made a big purchase, without talking to his CPA first. Now of course Harold has every right to do that, but this time it’s lead him down a path of it having some not so great tax implications. If only dear ole’ Harold had reached out to his CPA BEFORE, he may have had a different story.

It’s because of clients like good ole’ Harold that Dan Myers wanted to start a company like Kuberneo CPA in the first place. I remember him telling me pretty early on that in the past he just did clients’ tax returns and would see places where he could have helped if only he’d had the chance the previous year, but alas, here he was doing the return so it’s too late. Dan wanted to get into a position of being able to offer strategy to his clients to help make smart tax moves…thus Kuberneo CPA was born.

Never fear future Harolds, I have made a BEFORE list for you. In addition to asking your financial planner, it’s a good idea to meet up with your CPA BEFORE making moves in a lot of these areas. Just taking the time to have the conversation could save you a lot of money, effort and heartache.

  • Before starting the home buying process
  • Before deciding what to contribute to your retirement account or making changes to your retirement account ESPECIALLY withdrawing money early
  • Before setting up a college savings plan
  • Before setting up a business on your own
  • Before changing your business’ structure
  • Before creating partnerships with foreign entities
  • Before moving your business to another state or country
  • Before hiring an employee
  • Before hiring a subcontractor
  • Before paying off a loan (especially your mortgage)
  • Before selling a rental property or business asset
  • Before making big purchases
  • Before making an optional job change
  • Before going to a donut shop alone, without asking your accounting staff if they’d like anything

Hey Harold, you still with me? It’s not that your CPA will tell you “no” regarding a big decision, but they can offer critical information for the decision making process and may be able to offer strategies or alternate options that can help you achieve your goals while minimizing taxes. One more quick note- in general, it’s a good idea to set up a meeting with your CPA sometime between October-December if you haven’t been checking in with them throughout the year. This allows time to implement tax saving strategies, before the end of the year.

BEFORE you end up like Harold, be sure to take the time to ask yourself, “Should I set up a meeting with my CPA to discuss this first?” and “When am I bringing Bethany a donut?”

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