While not everyone needs an accountant, the quality of one makes a massive difference for those that do. Accountants handle a lot of sensitive information, and most importantly, your money. As you become more wealthy, or start a business, an accountant can make life much easier. Although, they also pose a risk if you don’t pick the right person. So, here are the primary traits of a good accountant.
Trustworthiness is comprised of a few things. Not only does it mean honesty, it also means being communicative. An accountant handles your money, and trusting anybody with your finances requires a lot of trust. So, getting somebody who will stay vocal and keep you in the loop is the way to go. You can’t have somebody who deals shadily with your money, or doesn’t keep you informed even if they are doing their job well. It isn’t enough to tell the truth, it’s about consistent and trustworthy feedback. Additionally, they need to be ethical. Even a well-meaning accountant can get you in trouble by insisting they can save or make you money in a way that may be skirting the rules.
One of the easiest ways to end up in trouble with a bad accountant is when they aren’t well-versed in the rules and regulations of finance. Since you are going to be trusting them to know how to handle your money, you have to be certain that they are not going to get you in trouble with the IRS. Additionally, in a business setting, you can get in trouble with a whole myriad of federal agencies if your accountant doesn’t know the law.
If you’re hiring an accountant for a business, getting one with knowledge of your specific industry can be extremely helpful. Accounting can seem pretty much the same across the board; in reality, there are complexities in every business that will be important when bookkeeping. So, looking for experience in your industry is vital to ensure the job is done most efficiently.
Organized and Accurate
Much of the job of an accountant is making sure that books are kept in a way that makes them easy to access. This means that they are well-organized so that you can easily send them to lenders, government entities, and business partners at a moment’s notice. This will not only keep you out of trouble, but it will make financing a much quicker process. With debt being a major part of most successful businesses, being able to get and maintain financing on a dime can ensure that you maximize your profitability. So, make sure your accountant is extremely accurate and organized. Otherwise, the work they’ve done can quickly be rendered useless.
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