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CostHelper > Small Business  > Business Tax Preparation

Business Tax Preparation Cost


How Much Does Business Tax Preparation Cost?

 
low costLow: $250-$500high costHigh: $1,500-$2,000+
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  Typical costs:
  • Charges for preparing quarterly and year-end business taxes vary depending on the complexity, the size of the firm and the kind of business. Fees for preparing monthly, quarterly and annual payroll tax forms are usually included as part of a payroll service. Income taxes for a sole proprietorship with no employees are filed as part of the owner's personal income taxes.
  • Hourly rates run $100-$400 for enrolled agents or tax accountants; often accountants charge the higher amounts. Generally a fairly simple income tax return for a partnership, corporation or a sole proprietorship with few or no employees starts around $250-$500 and goes up to $1,500-$2,500 and more depending on circumstances. Some firms have a minimum charge for corporate income tax preparation of $500 or more.
  • TurboTax Business[1] software costs $83-$90 and can help organize your business taxes, but CNet[2] says it's still a good idea to hire a tax professional to be sure you cover all the bases.
Related articles: Accounting Software, Bookkeeper, Accountant

What should be included:
  • An enrolled agent has specialized IRS training and is licensed by the federal government; a certified public accountant has passed a rigorous exam and is licensed in their state. Often income taxes are included in the range of services provided by an accountant.
  • Once you provide the needed data for the year, the enrolled agent or accountant should prepare your annual tax forms, estimate your quarterly payments and provide the means (envelopes or online) for you to file or pay as needed. A flat fee for tax preparation may or may not include answers to your questions throughout the year to help you set up purchases and other business practices to take advantage of any tax breaks.
  • Nolo Press answers frequently asked questions for small business taxes and sells two informative books, "Deduct It! Lower Your Small Business Taxes" ($35) and "Tax Savvy for Small Business" ($37).
  • The IRS[3] provides information on a range of topics for small business owners and self-employed people.
  • Microsoft.com[4] explains why you should hire both a bookkeeper and a tax professional.
Additional costs:
  • Some tax professionals charge for phone calls or questions beyond a certain minimum amount; beware of those who bill their full hourly rate for a five-minute telephone conversation.
Shopping for business tax preparation:
  • The National Association of Enrolled Agents lets you search for local members.
  • Referrals are available from your state CPA society[5] and The National Society of Accountants.
  • Intuit[6] lets you search for local accounting professionals who are certified to work with its QuickBooks software.
  • Get verbal referrals from other local business owners and ask your state board of accountancy about the status of a CPA's license.
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What People Are Paying - Recent Comments
I do Buisness, personal, and payroll taxes
Amount: $700.00 per year
Posted by: Selah in San Antonio, TX.Posted: January 21st, 2018 06:01AM
Accountant: Selah MeligNumber of Employees: 2owners 4 employees
So in an entire year I spent about $700 just in buying the materials I needed to work for a restaurant as their HR/Tax department. The prices that these accountants and tax professionals are charging are fair on a small Buisness standard because IF you are chosen by the IRS for audit- they work on your behalf to defend you.
Not only that- but think of all the money they SAVE you by making sure your Buisness income is fairly taxed versus over taxed- it is often THOUSANDS of dollars- especially if you are diligent in keeping your business records and personal records as well. In the long run even though they seem pricey, it pays to be in good standing with the IRS and keep the most money possible in your business pocket.
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Construction Company tax cost
Amount: $21,000.00 per year
Posted by: Smallconstruction in Nashua, NH.Posted: January 18th, 2017 10:01AM
Accountant: RedmanNumber of Employees: 3
I feel like we're paying way too much for our taxes. We do about 3.5 million in business and do have a lot of subcontractors (30+) but we have an in-house bookkeeper that helps with most of it.
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Am I paying too much
Amount: $1,800.00 per year
Posted by: Martín Duran in Turpin, OK.Posted: January 14th, 2017 04:01PM
Accountant: Mr ?.Number of Employees: 1
I have a small auto repair shop. He prepared my tax return in 2016. I do my own 941, wage report and monthly taxes. He does the rest and I still get charged 1800.00. Is this too much?
I want to know if I could do turbo tax on my own
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What work was actually done for you?
Amount: $700.00 per year
Posted by: Joseph Accetturo II in Providence, RI.Posted: July 14th, 2016 11:07AM
Accountant: CPANumber of Employees:
No one ever gives all the info. Did he need to do bookkeeping, accounting and taxes or did the preparer just simply plug numbers into a tax return. This is important to know. It takes a lot of time to do the accounting and bookkeeping part if you haven't done it. Handing a box of receipts is never a good idea. You will pay a lot of money for this approach. The taxes take about an hour.
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Cost for data entry bank statements in to QuickBooks
Amount: $160.00 per year
Posted by: [email protected] in CORONA, CA.Posted: May 29th, 2016 05:05PM
Accountant: Number of Employees: 3
Currently I take clients bank statements (12 months) organize the information into QuickBooks...what's a fair price for this kind of service
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Can't justify the cost
Amount: $2,560.00 per year
Posted by: Burt Brooks in Danbury, CT.Posted: April 13th, 2016 11:04AM
Accountant: Accounting firm in CTNumber of Employees: 0
We are a husband and wife, small partnership business with no employees. Have been using the same accounting firm for 6 years. Was told in the beginning that price would decrease once firm got to know our business. Two years ago, we complained about pricing and they dropped the price by $350.00. Past two years business has dropped significantly and has very little accounting. Accountant this year said how easy our returns were, and commented they do not take that long. Picked up returns (business and personal) with bill of $2,560.00 for both. When asked how they billed (for the millionth time), was told by the hour. I asked the staff accountant what his hourly rate was and he replied he was not sure what they billed him out at. Don't believe him and feel like we are being overcharged.
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Taxes per year
Amount: $18,000.00 per year
Posted by: Zac in Nashua, NH.Posted: January 22nd, 2016 08:01AM
Accountant: Number of Employees: 3
Construction business with about 20 subs and 3 employees. Corporation.
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Did we get taken advantage of???
Amount: $850.00 per year
Posted by: Gene Smith in Methuen, MA.Posted: March 22nd, 2014 06:03AM
Accountant: Mr. XNumber of Employees: 1
I had a small business for 8 months and then worked for a company and got a w-2 for 4 months.
Our tax preparer took 2 hours to complete the forms, both federal and state (MA). This was the first time we met. Once completed, he said the fee would be $850 after I was to receive around $2000.
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I work for a cpa
Amount: $2,250.00 per year
Posted by: colleen r. in sacramento, CA.Posted: November 29th, 2013 09:11PM
In Sacramento, California, I have worked for a CPA (30 years experience) who charges a minimum fee of $2250.00 per business return. The other CPA (20 years experience) in our office charges a minimum fee of $1750.00 per business return. They both have had minimal complaints about the charge, however, continue to be referred to other businesses and continue to gain clients...and turn some away too! If you are a sole prop. then it might be too much but, if you are any other type of business you got a good deal. Remember CPAs can talk directly to the IRS or FTB should you have a run in with them (audit). You are not only paying for your return to be filed, you are also paying for his experience and advise during the year. You shouldn't get billed for the occasional phone call or quick swing by his office if you need financial advise during the year. I would make sure to use his knowledge wisely:) Good luck!
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Is my accountant charging too much
Amount: $1,500.00 per year
Posted by: Constu in Los Angeles, CA.Posted: May 15th, 2011 01:05AM
Accountant: Jeff KawaguchiNumber of Employees:
I started a business this year and hired a CPA to review my books and do my taxes (Form 1065). Because he was a friend, I did not ask for prices before hand -- BIG MISTAKE. Now he is asking for 1500! Is this too much??
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External Resources:
  1.  turbotax.intuit.com/?_requestid=18782
  2.  www.cnet.com/4520-10192_1-6411621-1.html
  3.  www.irs.gov/Businesses/Small-Businesses-&-Self-Employed/Small-Business-and-Self-Employe...
  4.  www.microsoft.com/smallbusiness/resources/finance/tax_advice/good_reasons_to_have_both_...
  5.  www.taxsites.com/cpa-societies.html
  6.  proadvisor.intuit.com/acm/alpha/search-criteria-v2.html?latitude=034.063&longitude=-118...
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