The Benefits and Challenges of Starting a CPA Firm

Woman holding open sign. Starting a CPA firm concept.

Certified public accountants have two choices after earning their degree. They can strike it out on their own, or they can find a firm that is looking for qualified CPAs. The thought of starting a CPA firm and being in control of your own business may be too good to pass up, and it is true that this option has many benefits. However, there are also challenges that come with being independent, and it is important to understand what those are before you hang up your own sign.

Not Everyone can be Their Own Boss

Being in charge is empowering, and it will ensure that your accounting firm runs exactly as you want it to. However, being one’s own boss is not for everyone. CPAs are not generally known as risk-takers, and you may have fears about the lack of a financial safety net. To ensure success, you must be highly motivated, extremely ambitious, and possess excellent time management skills. If you already have all of these things, starting your own firm may be for you. If the thought of being in complete control of your own success or failure concerns you, it may be better to find an existing firm that is looking for a qualified CPA.

Running a Business Takes Time

You will be putting in a lot of hours regardless of whether you work for yourself or someone else. However, starting a CPA firm may take more time than you think. Not only will you have to provide billable services that will bring in the profit your firm needs, but you will also have to ensure that you are complying with regulations, keeping your own books, and perhaps even supervising employees. Along with this, you will also have to buy office equipment and supplies, and perform the daily and weekly administrative duties of running your own business. Even when business management is one of your strengths, the time it takes to run a business is unavoidable.

You Will Need Your Own Client List

Picking and choosing your own clients is actually one of the best parts of starting a CPA firm. You can decide if you are going to cater to individuals with high net worth, or whether you will offer your services to locals in your neighborhood. Regardless of what you choose, you will have to build your own client list, which takes time, just like all other aspects of running a business. You may have to draw on your own personal experience to reach certain markets, or use services such as Google My Business. Regardless of the route you choose, taking the time to get clients and build that list will also take away from the time you could be working and billing clients.

Starting a CPA Firm? Our Washington Business Brokers can Help

If starting a CPA firm has been a dream of yours and you are confident you can overcome any challenges that come your way, our Washington business brokers at Private Practice Transitions can help. We will help you navigate the complex matters of purchasing property, or buying an existing business and turning it into your own. When you are ready to start your own business, call us at (253) 509-9224 or contact us online to learn more about how we can help.

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