Is Having a Good CPA Good Enough?

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Now that I’m doing tax strategies and we’re advertising DKAffiliated, we’re getting a LOT of interest from you. It seems that we’ve received at least one email from every part of the country saying, more or less, the same thing: “I can’t find anyone in my area who understands my business and/or investments. Can you help?”

Let’s be really honest here. It’s hard to find good financial advisors. I have a lot of screening that I go through finding the best CPA firms to work with through the DKAffiliate program. And we’ve changed up that program so that CPAs have to attend classes with me. Period. No exceptions.

But, what does difference does that make to you? Why isn’t it enough any more to simply have a good CPA?

Well, first of all, there are different types of CPAs. A CPA could specialize in financial reporting, in SEC work, in auditing, in management or cost accounting or tax. So, just knowing someone is a CPA doesn’t really tell you whether they are skilled enough to help you with a specific tax challenge.

Your choices start to focus when you make the decision to find an expert to work with you regarding your taxes. An average tax CPA is trained on how to complete tax forms. The work is done after the fact and there is no tax planning available (because the year is always long gone.) At this point, a good tax CPA (a step above the average) will spot places that you can change your tax plan so that you don’t repeat the same tax mistakes. There is an assumption that your income and expenses will be similar, though.

When the next year’s tax return is done, a good tax CPA will be able to further refine the strategy. In general, it takes about 3 years to get a good tax strategy set up for an existing business this way. In the case of a new business, it takes 3 years of stabilized income and expenses to effectively plan a strategy.

The DKA Tax Strategy process is designed to save money on your taxes three years faster, on average, than working with a regular CPA.

Now contrast that with a Tax Strategist. A Tax Strategist is a CPA who has studied how to predict tax consequences from business and investment decisions. It’s part art, along with the science of tax law. The primary difference between a good CPA and a Tax Strategist is time. A CPA/Tax Strategist can lay out a course of tax loopholes that steer you clear of tax situations, legally. A good tax CPA catches you after you’ve run into the problems and then hopefully helps you avoid them next year.

Let’s look at a quick example of what the cost of waiting might be.

Let’s say a Tax Strategy appointment with me found you the average tax savings of $14,500. If you instead had a really good tax CPA, chances are he would find the same the savings after the average time of 3 years.

You’ve lost 3 years times $14,500…or $43,500. Plus, of course, you’ve lost the opportunity to grow that money during those three years.

UPDATE: There are now better opportunities than EVER BEFORE to legally save money on the amount of taxes you pay. I’m averaging a savings of just under $30,000 per client per year for people I’ve met with this year. That means working with a traditional CPA, under a traditional program, would cost you $90,000. Time is money!

If you’re ready to start saving taxes in 2008, please visit to learn more about working with one of our affiliated CPA firms. Or, if you’re interested in having a tax strategy directly with me, please drop Richard an email at or give him a call at 866-829-2368, extension 3 (602-258-0700 ext 3 for local Phoenix calls).

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