How much does a good accountant cost?

Accountancy fees vary considerably between accountants. And that’s because the service offered varies so much. Find our more by reading our blog or by clicking here and watching our video.

We focus on providing a quality service for all our clients. That means we’re not the cheapest. We’re not the most expensive, either, but we want to charge a fee that allows us to spend enough time on your accounts to fully understand your business and give great advice to grow your business, reduce your tax bill, and help you reach your goals.

We do know that not everyone wants a quality service. As outlined above, for some people £200 per year is plenty to get what they want and need. But for others it’s £2,000 per year as they have a larger business and want advice throughout the year.

We also have clients that pay us £2,000 per month, because they’re larger clients and they want strategic advice, monthly management accounts and meetings.

Fixed fees and transparent fees

We set a fee at the start of each year. We prepare a detailed proposal that is easy to understand and includes transparent pricing – it explains each service that we’re providing and the fee for each service.

To an extent, we provide a menu of services and you can pick which you do and don’t want.

As you can imagine, our pricing software is cloud-based and ensures consistency in our pricing.

The amounts for the annual services, eg Accounts and Tax Returns, are fixed for the year and paid in 12 monthly instalments.

Fees for other monthly services, eg payroll or management accounts, can be added or removed throughout the year.

How is our fee calculated?

It comes down to a few things. The main factors are:

  • The size of the business – a £100,000 turnover business needs less work than a £1,000,000 turnover business, which needs less work than a £10,000,000 turnover business
  • The structure of the business – is it a sole trader, a partnership, or a limited company? Each has different legal requirements for accounts and tax
  • What will the record keeping be like? Are you going to bring us a big stack of paper, or are you more organized and do your own bookkeeping?

Then it’s all about what level of service you want. Do you need payroll or VAT returns? Do you want management accounts and regular meetings?

To give you an idea of our fees, here are some examples of how a start-up might grow with us and need different services.

Minimum fee

If we’re working with a limited company, our absolute minimum fee is £79 plus VAT per month. These businesses are usually operated by one person with annual sales under £30,000.

We do have a number of clients on this fee and we’re very happy to have them.

Our service covers the legal requirements for the business and the owner.

Small or start-up business

A one-person consultancy business might have sales of around £100,000 and simply need our Business Service that includes:

  • Accounts and Corporation Tax for the company
  • Quarterly VAT returns
  • Monthly payroll for the owner including all submissions to HMRC
  • Annual confirmation statement
  • Self-Assessment Tax Returns for the director
  • Xero software to allow them to do their own bookkeeping

For this service, we currently charge £134 plus VAT per month for 12 months. This service also includes ad-hoc advice as well, and a meeting to talk about those accounts and what they mean to you and your business.

Growing business

Sales of the business grow to £400,000 per year, and the business takes on an extra two staff members.

To continue the Business Service, the fee would then go up to £192 plus VAT per month. The increase reflects the increase in complexity as the business grows

However, when some of our clients have grown to this size, they decide to upgrade to our Premier Service. Here, we look beyond just the business accounts and also look at other key performance indicators within the business, discussing these with you every 3 months to really keep you on track and give you a lot more ideas of how to grow the business and reduce your tax bill.

So, as well as the services provided for the Business Service, we’ll add:

  • Quarterly Management Accounts and Review Meetings
  • Tax Planning Review two months before the year end to proactively reduce your tax bill where possible
  • Fee protection insurance to cover any fees if you ever have any HMRC investigations

Our fee for this becomes £378 plus VAT per month.

Larger business

If your sales increase to £1.5m and you take on another 10 employees, you might choose to stick with the Premier Service. As sales are higher and there’s more employees, the work that we have to do is more complex. Our fee would increase to £546 plus VAT per month.

At this point, we might suggest that you upgrade to Monthly Management Accounts and Review Meetings.

To do this, ie going from quarterly to monthly, would increase the fee to £1,032 per month plus VAT.

These are real prices! But they are just examples – it depends on the size of the business, as well as what you want and need.

You can add services and take them away to get the price that fits your budget and strategy.

We have clients at all levels, and every client gets a top quality service from a top quality team.

The best way to understand prices is to meet with us, so we can understand your business and goals. Then we can agree on how we help you to get there.

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Any questions?

 

If you’d like a meeting or a video call to discuss this, please get in touch with your favourite Liverpool accountant