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Guide to choosing the right contractor accountant

Guide to choosing the right contractor accountant
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    Contractors operate across a variety of different industries, providing a wide range of services of all different shapes and sizes and, therefore can have complexities within their accounts.

    In addition, there can be many pressures felt by contractors regarding the ever-increasing compliance requirements and administration needed to manage the books, understand the financial position, meet return deadlines and stay on top of the day job.

    The ideal solution could be to find a contractor accountant to assist. However, finding the right contractor accountant can be challenging as many firms will claim to be specialists in this sector.

    This guide will provide some essential tips to help find the right contractor accountant for you.

    What do contractor accountants do?

    Contractor accountants are financial specialists who offer their expertise to assist contractors and freelancers with their financial accounts.

    They often assist contractors in two ways:

    • By legally reducing the tax burden upon the contractor
    • By ensuring that all legal requirements are met in the most time-effective approach possible

    The accountant will often take on the burden of the tax submissions, including claiming any allowable expenses, as well as advising on any forthcoming government legislation changes that must be adhered to.

    Contractor accountants, therefore, stay abreast of the latest legislative changes, including Making Tax Digital requirements and therefore will already have compliant software needed for this legislative change. By utilising an accountant, a contractor will not need to implement the technological changes required in order to comply, saving both time and money.

    Contractor accountants can save individuals money by ensuring that their business is operating in the most tax-efficient way, therefore reducing their overall tax burden. Also, the service will take the pressure off the contractor by removing the administrative pressure and the possibility of late tax submission charges or any other penalties.

    Contractor accountants usually offer a tailored package of services in order to meet the requirements of the contractor. This approach ensures that the contractor or freelancers only pay for the support that they need.

    How to choose the right contractor accountant

    There are several factors to consider when seeking the right contractor accountant for your business:

    • Choose an accountant that is knowledgeable within your industry: Contractors work across a wide range of industries. Therefore, ensuring that an accountant of your choice is familiar with the specific chosen industry is important.
    • Explore the services offered: Accountancy practices usually offer many services, from company registration, payroll, VAT returns, corporation tax returns, tax advice, plus many more. It is advisable to review the services offered and prioritise the needs of the business, and then seek several quotes from competing contractor accountants to compare costs, packages, and pricing structures.
    • Check the terms and conditions offered by competitor accountants: There are likely to be some differences in the services provided between accountants, including the costs and terms available. For example, some accountants may offer an inactive service that may be useful for when a contractor is not submitting work through the company. This may occur for several reasons, for example, being employed by the client for a fixed-term contract or taking an extended holiday. In addition, always check the charging policy, whether there are fixed fees or if there are any hidden charges.
    • Investigate what software the potential accountant uses: In order to collaborate in the most effective manner, there may need to be some shared usage of accounting software. Therefore, it is important to clarify which software the potential accountant uses before engaging.
    • Explore the opening hours and communication methods available: In the modern world, many tasks can be undertaken online, and therefore the location of an accounting practice may not be a top priority. However, if there are queries to overcome, finding out when the practice is open and the options available to communicate with the team may help decide between options.
    • Review the credibility of the accountant that you are considering: Always research the accountant thoroughly before proceeding, including checking the accreditation, reputation and experience of any firm in consideration.

    Our staff at WIS accountancy are already fully qualified or are taking part in two recognised training programmes to become fully qualified. In addition, we have many reviews available to browse here.

    FAQs

    What is a contractor accountant?

    A contractor accountant can advise the most tax-efficient way to structure and operate a business for a freelance or contracting individual. A contractor accountant offers an array of tailored services, including tax submissions and tax planning, relieving the contractor of such responsibilities.

    Must a contractor use an accountancy service?

    No, contractors do not have to use the services of an accountant. However, the benefits of doing so can often outweigh the initial costs. Accountants understand the processes and requirements needed to comply with legislation and ensure that deadlines are met. Accountants are also able to apply their tax expertise so that the entity is the most tax efficient possible, which in turn can save the contractor money.

    How much does WIS Accountancy charge for its services to contractors?

    Our charges vary depending on the tailored accountancy package required. Please get in touch through our website to obtain a personalised quote.

    Summary

    WIS Accountancy offers a full service from wealth management and tax advisory to personalised contractor accountancy. We currently have four physical offices serving Hertfordshire, Berkshire, Essex and Kent. However, offer our dedicated team of experts also work with clients throughout the UK.

    In addition, our sister company, WIS Mortgages offers specialised brokerage services suitable for contractors.

    Our dedicated team of accountants and brokers keeps up to date with the latest legislation, ensuring that we can provide expert advice tailored to our client’s requirements.

    Please contact us on 0203 011 1898, for a free, personalised consultation to discuss if WIS Accountancy is a perfect match for your business.

    If you’re a contractor looking for more accounting advice, then check out these blogs:

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