Posted July 21, 2019
Individual Tax Return Preparation
For individual tax returns, we competitively offer a simple fee range of $500 to $700. Before you freak out and swipe left, our fee includes August and November financial tune-ups including our expertise in complicated tax matters. Think of our fee range as easy, medium and hard (we’re from Colorado, so we think in green circles, blue squares and black diamonds). Having said that, we try to maintain historical fees for returning clients.
Your tax preparation fee is not dependent on the number of forms used to prepare your tax returns. That’s old school. Rather your fee will depend on the amount of time required to accurately and comprehensively prepare your tax returns. Let’s not forget basic disorganization, advanced disorganization, disguised disorganization and misrepresented organization which can all increase your tax preparation fee.
We only have time on this earth to sell, and we cannot inventory it nor is it refundable. Therefore, our fees are an attempt to coincide with expected time spent. You can help by being organized and using our simple, customized PDF forms. Unlike other tax accounting firms, we are comfortable giving solid price quotes and guaranteeing our work. We’ve been doing this for a while, and we know what it takes.
Taxable events that might increase preparation time include-
- Sale of primary residence
- Stock and other asset sales
- Day trading, mark to market
- K-1 income, K-1 dispositions (sales)
- Debt cancellation
- Foreign earned income exclusions
- Non-U.S. citizens
- Extensive tax treaty research
As mentioned, not using our simple, customized fillable PDF organizers and worksheets to summarize your receipts, transactions, notes, etc. might significantly increase preparation time and subsequent preparation fee. We sound like your mother, but you truly are the most intimate with your financial and tax worlds- we only peer into your life for a limited amount of time in an attempt to know everything. So, please help us help you!
However, we don’t mind organizing your stuff too if asked- that’s what we do so you don’t have to. Sipping on some coffee in our PJs watching re-runs of Law and Order, wondering if Jack is going to win the big case, all while tallying up receipts is no problem at all.
Small Business Owners and Rental Properties
Most rental property or small business owners can expect to pay between $500 to $700 for tax preparation which includes August and November financial tune-ups. If you are both a landlord and a business owner, you can expect our fee to be on the higher end of our range (with a referral for a psych eval – just kidding). A lot of small business owners and rental property owners miss out on tax deductions for not knowing how to position themselves correctly. For example, deducting travel expenses to and from your rental. Or the optimized way to deduct cell phones, mileage and home offices. Please click on the buttons below for more information on rental property tax preparation and small business tax preparation-
Expats and Ex-patriates
Most expats can expect to pay between $500 to $700, and this includes your physical presence or bona fide residency teststo compute your foreign earned income exclusion. We also determine your foreign housing allowance or exclusion, and help with Social Security and retirement planning issues. Please click on the button below for more expat tax prep information.
Non-resident aliens or anyone who has a United States tax fling requirement or obligation who are not citizens, our tax preparation fee range increases slightly to $600 to $800. This usually involves extension tax treaty research, overnight mailings, Power of Attorney documentation and a slew of special handling to ensure your tax consequence is correctly handled.
The Watson CPA Group has been preparing tax returns since 2007 for airline pilots and flight attendants across the country for a variety of airlines and aviation companies. As you might be aware, Jason Watson used to be an airline pilot for 17 years and Watson CPA Group was built on our flight crew clients. A quick shout out- We couldn’t have done it with you!
Fast forward to today… the IRS no longer allows deductions for per diem and other typical flight crew expenses such as uniforms, cell phone, flight physicals, luggage, etc. However, several states still allow this deduction (as of now they are NY, MN, IA, CA and HI). As such, we are no longer updating our per diem calculator but if you want to calculate your own per diem deduction for the states that continue to allow it we suggest PerDiemCalc.com; we will credit you $25 towards your tax preparation fee.
Here are some resources for our flight crew peeps!
August and November Financial Tune-Ups
For those clients who have a tax-only engagement with us, we offer a lot more than just a tax return. Tax returns are boring. Tax planning including projections and end of year tax moves is way more valuable to you than 100 pages of gobbly-goo in some dust-catching PDF aimed at IRS compliance. Wow, that is a long sentence… anyway, in August we offer a tax planning tune-up and later on in November we offer an end of year tax consultation. These are complimentary consultations. Sure, you’re paying for it in some fashion with your tax preparation fees above but then again, this is a valuable service that most tax professionals don’t offer. Click the buttons below for more information. Riveting!
Lots of Moving Parts
Most of our clients fit into the buckets above. Then again we have several clients with a ton going on. We have a handful of clients than have over 30 rentals each. We have day-traders with Schedule D entries that rack up 15 pages. We have investors who flip 10-12 homes per year… nuts! These clients are the minority, not just to the Watson CPA Group but to the general taxpaying public. But if this is you, we can offer a competitive fee range based on your previous tax returns to give you peace of mind of your tax preparation fee. We are not out for the quick money grab and maintain a long-term vision with our clients.
Our fees always include a joint tax return with a state tax return, and of course eFiling (who the heck charges for that anymore?). We can also do a married filing separate analysis to determine the tax benefit if any, and also determine how each taxpayer contributed to the tax consequence (for example, for divorcing couples).
Leverage Your Tax Returns
The Watson CPA Group is not just a bunch of tax preparers who shuffle some numbers and plop them into a 100-page PDF. We want to help you understand the nuts and bolts of the numbers so together we can leverage more out of your tax returns. How are you affected by AMT? What can be done? What does allowing your child to claim themselves and take education credits do for the “family unit?” What are the rules for making a rental property a primary residence and saving some capital gains tax upon subsequent sale? What about cost segregation for your rental properties to accelerate depreciation? Do we call grandma’s house a rental or a second home? IRA versus Roth, and the effects of each.
Reviewing what-if scenarios and tax planning is critical to maximizing your wealth.
Tax Return Review
Every client is different. So, we default to not reviewing tax returns with clients unless a) you request it or b) we feel there are material items in your tax returns that require some highlighting and reviewing with you. You are the most intimate with your financial world so your review is essential to the tax return preparation process. Also, we want you to be comfortable with your tax liability; we are not asking you to be happy, but at least comfortable knowing the the numbers are accurate.
As such, we welcome an opportunity to review your tax returns with you, answer any questions you might have, and ensure a comprehensive and accurate tax return is being submitted to the IRS. We never want to stray away from this level of access and customer service. We live in a virtual world, and we use technology as a tool in the tool box, but the Watson CPA Group never wants to lose focus on our clients’ traditional needs.
The Watson CPA Group are tax and business consultants, not just number crunchers. Anyone can balance a checkbook. Anyone can put the right number in the right blanks. But we take a consultative approach to tax preparation. You can always find someone to do it for less- of course. However consider the solid back-end support which you will get with the Watson CPA Group that other tax preparation companies might not provide. Read more about our Value Proposition here.
We are Colorado Springs CPAs but over 80% of our clients are outside Colorado. We can provide excellent service through modern technology and our client portal. If you live somewhere really cool like Seattle or Madison, our team is more than willing to travel. Even LA has its moments.