How to Write a Business Plan Tax Preparation

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If you have training in tax preparation, starting a small business providing tax planning and preparation services is relatively easy. If you have not gone through a tax preparation course, you can find them at your local adult education program or through H&R Block or Jackson Hewitt, where you can also gain experience as one of their employed tax preparers.

Things You'll Need

  • Tax preparation training
  • Computer
  • Tax preparation software
  • Spreadsheet software
  • Describe your business model. What kind of services will you offer? What are your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities? What are the threats to your success?

  • Create a marketing plan. Who is your target market and how will you reach them? During tax season you will have little time for marketing but a well-planned marketing campaign that you pursue during the off-season will ensure you have plenty of customers for tax season.

  • Create your revenue model. Will you only prepare taxes, or will you provide a year-round bookkeeping and accounting service? Will you also provide other services such as notary and financial planning? It is always a good idea to have at least three different revenue streams, particularly in seasonal businesses.

  • Include a section on how you compare with your competition. Your location is important. Will you have walk-in business or will you travel to your clients? What do your most successful and least successful competitors do? How will your service differ?

  • Create your pro forma financials. How much will your business cost to start and what will be the monthly costs? Will there be a difference in costs during peak tax season?

  • Write a back-up plan. What are your benchmarks for success or failure? When will you know to tweak your plan? It is a good idea to envision specific problems that might arise and plan solutions.

Tips & Warnings

  • Your local SCORE office will be able to help you plan your tax preparation business and, if you need a loan to get it started, you may qualify for an SBA loan. Remember that you are a business owner, even if you only operate your business during tax season. This means you should have business cards and a website, belong to the local Chamber of Commerce, and go to lots of business networking events. Hand out your business card at every opportunity and place a stack of your cards in local pizza restaurants and dry cleaners.
  • Many people look for ways to sue service providers, so take out business errors-and-omissions insurance. You should also have a good relationship with an attorney in case you get sued or are required to appear in court in support of a client.

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