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Accountant gone bad (by RentsDue [MA]) Apr 15, 2024 12:41 PM
       (by NE [PA]) Apr 15, 2024 12:47 PM
       (by zero [IN]) Apr 15, 2024 1:06 PM
       (by Jim [CA]) Apr 15, 2024 1:07 PM
       (by Wilma [PA]) Apr 15, 2024 2:15 PM
       (by Wilma [PA]) Apr 15, 2024 2:16 PM
       (by Richard [MI]) Apr 15, 2024 3:28 PM
       (by tryan [MA]) Apr 15, 2024 3:47 PM
       (by tryan [MA]) Apr 15, 2024 3:55 PM
       (by Steve [MA]) Apr 15, 2024 4:29 PM
       (by MikeA [TX]) Apr 15, 2024 6:16 PM
       (by GKARL [PA]) Apr 15, 2024 6:40 PM
       (by MC [PA]) Apr 15, 2024 7:48 PM
       (by Landlord ofthe Flies [TX]) Apr 15, 2024 10:31 PM
       (by MAT [PA]) Apr 15, 2024 11:19 PM
       (by Marv [IL]) Apr 16, 2024 8:34 AM
       (by Robin [WI]) Apr 16, 2024 8:43 AM
       (by John... [MI]) Apr 16, 2024 11:02 AM
       (by Phil [OR]) Apr 16, 2024 9:49 PM
       (by BRAD 20,000 [IN]) Apr 17, 2024 1:10 AM
       (by BRAD 20,000 [IN]) Apr 17, 2024 1:12 AM
       (by BRAD 20,000 [IN]) Apr 17, 2024 1:15 AM
       (by zero [IN]) Apr 17, 2024 9:38 AM
       (by RENTALDOG [OH]) Apr 19, 2024 1:37 PM

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Accountant gone bad (by RentsDue [MA]) Apr 15, 2024 12:41 PM

Once again, my accountant is down to the wire and is probably going to file an extension even though he has had all my finely detailed taxes for 2 months. Was great the first year, but since then has had every excuse you can think of. This cycle repeats itself with all of them. My fellow LLs are all having the same problem. I realize I have several businesses so there is a lot going on but I pay about 8K for him to file taxes. And he canít seem to do it on time. Are extensions just normal? I had one who never filed extensions but he went on the run or something.


Accountant gone bad (by NE [PA]) Apr 15, 2024 12:47 PM

8 grand seems really high.

Accountant gone bad (by zero [IN]) Apr 15, 2024 1:06 PM

We didn't have an extension.

But then again we are small time. Tiny amounts of money involved and only one LLC to deal with. --107.147.xx.xx

Accountant gone bad (by Jim [CA]) Apr 15, 2024 1:07 PM

Change accountants. --23.162.xx.xx

Accountant gone bad (by Wilma [PA]) Apr 15, 2024 2:15 PM

I went through that with my MIL's taxes after her husband died. We went through 4 different accountants in as many years - then gave up and began doing the returns myself, including when the house was sold after 31 years.

One of the providers drove to my MIL's home at 10PM on 4/15 for her signature and payment (because 86 yo ladies don't do online signatures or payments) - she'd had the proper paperwork for two months, but had put them down on a chair that then had a box placed on it. We discovered the following year that the provider had missed the fact that the tax year's RMD had not been taken. Fortunately, the next guy picked up on that, had her pay, and got the penalties waived due to her unfamiliarity with RMDs and being newly widowed.

I rely on a website called "taxmama" for my stickiest questions. It's a group of tax professionals who have taken pity on those of us struggling with tax questions while trying to do the right thing. They answer succinct, well-explained questions with excellent advice. Just don't overstay your welcome with questions that could be answered by using H&R Block or Turbotax software, or with a simple internet search.

I hope that you find a better provider in the future.

Accountant gone bad (by Wilma [PA]) Apr 15, 2024 2:16 PM

"She" in the second paragraph was the tax accountant, not my MIL.

Accountant gone bad (by Richard [MI]) Apr 15, 2024 3:28 PM

I've found that they typically take as many customers as they possibly can. Then they sort them as to who will pay the most and the fastest and then do extensions for everyone else. (They also do the ones that they think will or might drop them first - kind of like doctors, mechanics, plumbers, etc)Kind of like take the engine apart then tell the customer you are waiting for parts. Get the tax return started then tell the customer they need to bring in more info - same thing. That way they get as many customers (fish) on the hook as possible and finish off the big ones that pay a lot first.

If your return is complicated, you likely don't have a lot of choice.

Accountant gone bad (by tryan [MA]) Apr 15, 2024 3:47 PM

I used the same CPA for 30 years .... EVERY year the $$ creeped up as his office grew.

When he hit $1500 for my S corp and $500 for my personal return I jumped to TURBO tax. So now I am under a state audit (as stated earlier). His time to fight this would have cost me my first born! Jury is still out on how Audit Defender will handle this.

Stay tuned!

Accountant gone bad (by tryan [MA]) Apr 15, 2024 3:55 PM

I am wary of filing an extension because (my understanding) you have to PAY taxes based on the previous year to file it.

Accountant gone bad (by Steve [MA]) Apr 15, 2024 4:29 PM

We normally review our books (real-estate, personal, contracting & consulting) in mid-November so that we can do our income tax planning well before the end of our fiscal year. This gives us the ability to get a handle on what our tax obligations will be & to make any adjustments needed to minimize our income taxes. This has worked extremely well for us for a number of years. Years ago, after enduring our 3 complete IRS audit in less than 5 years, we started to file for extensions for both out federal & our MA income taxes. I'm really not sure if it's the reason we haven't been audited in years, but I plan to continue doing it.

Since we use quick books for all of our accounting it's relatively easy to predict what our tax obligations are just by comparing the current year to the previous one. As long as you make your quarterly estimated tax payments based on the previous year's return you shouldn't have too much to worry about. With the exception of one year when I made a math error, we've never been penalized for filing extensions.

Accountant gone bad (by MikeA [TX]) Apr 15, 2024 6:16 PM

I guess I'm blessed. I've only had 2 CPA's in 38 years and never filed an extension.

Accountant gone bad (by GKARL [PA]) Apr 15, 2024 6:40 PM

Here's the deal---there's a shortage of CPA's that will only get worst as most of us age out. That means most are simply overworked or are simply not taking on additional clients. The problem is that to become a CPA requires 150 credit hours or 5 years undergrad but the starting pay is not a good as engineering, computer science and etc which only require 4 years. Combine that with the grind and stress of tax season, and many young folks avoid the profession altogether and those left are getting out. The guys grinding under stress tend to have legacy practices where they're not using technology plus they have huge problems finding qualified help. The result is being completely backed up and forced to use extensions to manage the workflow. I perfectly understand your guy's problem. Many of us have the same problem.

The CPA shortage will become apparent to the general public over the next few years. Whenever I go to my continuing ed classes, there are no young people; just a bunch of folks in their 60's, 70's and 80's.

I almost bought another practice last year, but backed out of it for these very reasons. I use a lot of technology but I would have had to hire and train existing staff---and encounter the difficulty not only finding people, but supervising and etc. Plus it was a legacy type practice and I would have had to fight to implement the technology and train folks up. Did that in my younger days but not up for a lot of babysitting right now. That's way too stressful at my age.

Accountant gone bad (by MC [PA]) Apr 15, 2024 7:48 PM

I used to work on others taxes, but no more. Sometimes I will throw something out about things you should claim, usually met but, but... So now I don't bother except for a select few. I had a call the other day asking for help, wanting me to do them. Uh, nope. I told them where they could do for free. Nope, not going through it for nothing and the way the conversation was going that was what they wanted.

Accountant gone bad (by Landlord ofthe Flies [TX]) Apr 15, 2024 10:31 PM

Find out why the extension. In my case, I was waiting on two tax forms from two different companies (K1 and W2). It wasn't the accountant's fault in my situation.

Plus my accountant says that if you pay quarterly estimates and overpaid, an extension won't be a big deal. They don't fine you if THEY owe YOU the money.

Accountant gone bad (by MAT [PA]) Apr 15, 2024 11:19 PM

Iíve been very flexible and accommodating with my accountant, but am pretty sure nothing would ever get done if I didnít hound him periodically (albeit politely). One more misstep though, and Iím dropping him. We filed an extension last year and I finally got all my stuff to him in early September (still plenty of time), but he didnít finish until December and the IRS hit me with a $450 penalty plus the usual interest. My bad for not knowing the extension only lasted until 10/15, but he should have known that and got them done in time. Thatís why I pay him, to keep me out of trouble. Only reason I havenít dropped him already is the sentiment cited in this thread - I know how hard itíll be to find someone else and build a new relationship.

Accountant gone bad (by Marv [IL]) Apr 16, 2024 8:34 AM

It's easy to get backed up with too many drop off taxes during the season. I did 90% of my taxes within 10 days of drop-off.

The problem comes when you run into a tax return that is a pain in the xxx. I fight myself to pick them up and work on them but lots of time it is just easier to procrastinate and push them out to the deadline.

Accountant gone bad (by Robin [WI]) Apr 16, 2024 8:43 AM

We had the same issue with our accountant. Two years ago we got our taxes to her on March 15th and she didn't file them until the end of June. Last year we got them to her on Feb. 28th and they didn't get filed until JULY! Apparently one of her people quit on her. I would have been more understanding, except that there was zero communication as to the delay.

It is true that the IRS doesn't care if you file an extension as long as you've paid estimated taxes. But that is really tricky for us because our income varies so wildly from year to year based on whether we sell a property and/or have major repair expenses. If we don't file until July, we don't know how much to pay in estimated taxes the April before.

I was pretty frustrated at our CPA's lack of communication, so we found a new accountant through another RE investor that we're giving a try. She told us that if we got our documents to her by the 10th she could get them filed by the 15th. It's the 16th and she says she'll have them done today. The good news is that she isn't taking on any other clients, so maybe she'll actually be able to follow through!

Accountant gone bad (by John... [MI]) Apr 16, 2024 11:02 AM

GKARL speaks the truth. I am a partner at a CPA firm. (I am not an accountant.) We fight to find good employees -- even when we're paying very well for our area. I also suspect it will get worse in the coming years.

Accountant gone bad (by Phil [OR]) Apr 16, 2024 9:49 PM

Extension is GOOD. As long as you have the a very close approximate as to what you owe at the extension, it is a good thing to file for extension. Years ago, I was told that all the random audits ( the ones used for statistics) came from those who filed on time. by having an extension, you removed yourself from the pool of random audits. We have enough flags as it is...... home office, mileage on vehicle, depreciation etc that our returns are looked at a bit closer than "normal"... if we are doing something incorrect we will most likely be audited anyway. Just remove yourself from the random pool by filing for extension. I do it almost every year. Funny thing, IRS has made mistakes several times when i filed on time.

IRS has an automatic hang up after two hours. On hold for two hours and 10 seconds...hangs up. On hold for 1.5 hours and talking to agent after 30 minutes and 10 seconds.. hangs up. Ask me how I know.

Accountant gone bad (by BRAD 20,000 [IN]) Apr 17, 2024 1:10 AM

Re-read Phil's comments!

I have NEVER filed on time - ON PURPOSE! Because I learned this stuff at seminars like MrLL Convention.

Learn to handle money and taxes like the rich.

There is NO advantage and only disadvantages to filing on April 15. No fines or penalties for Extensions.

I understand frustration about someone you hire and trust but complaining about late filings shows a lack of understanding of what is required by the IRS. If you don't like their attitude, change.

Returns to be audited are pulled from the ON TIME filings. By the time I file in Oct they have met their audit quotas.

Yes, you must pay estimated taxes with your Extension form but it does not have to be accurate. You can make up any difference when it is filed. Your quarterly estimates should give you a good year end estimate.

Avoid the last minute rush and cookie cutter handling so my preparer can devote time to scratching out every possible deduction and tax advantage.

Your preparer is covered up with the March 15 deadlines and barely has time to breathe before April 15.

$8k sounds awfully high unless your business(s) are SUPER complicated. Mine is very complicated and does not begin to reach that fee.

Good advice I forgot to implement: Change atty and CPA every 5 years. Fresh eyes. My recent tax bills seemed high so I went to and contacted one of their ELPs - Endorsed Local Providers - to review the last few years. With a reasonable consultation fee he and his staff found I had overpaid $37,000 EACH YEAR!!! My preparer had not kept up with some recent changes. We are preparing amended returns becasue the IRS does not call you up and say "Hey, you forgot to take these deductions so we'll just send you a check."


Accountant gone bad (by BRAD 20,000 [IN]) Apr 17, 2024 1:12 AM


My first, old wise accoutant taught me this question to interview an accountant - "What is 2+2?"

If they say "4", move on.

The correct answer is "What do you want it to be?"


Accountant gone bad (by BRAD 20,000 [IN]) Apr 17, 2024 1:15 AM

Another PS

Every good manager knows there comes a point when it's just time to move on (to someone else.)

Like renters, no one is at the top of their game forever.


Accountant gone bad (by zero [IN]) Apr 17, 2024 9:38 AM

Wow do I have some new stuff to discuss with my tax guy!

Too late for an extension this year, but oh boy am I on this band wagon now.

Thanks all for the insight. --107.147.xx.xx

Accountant gone bad (by RENTALDOG [OH]) Apr 19, 2024 1:37 PM

Been filing extensions for years

same accountant for twenty years

he's a completely different person in october compared to april

He has time to really go over things and I even get some great explanations on how things really work

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