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Accountants Revenue and Covid.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 553 ✭✭✭berettaman


    Stratvs wrote: »
    Receipts/invoices with dates around Christmas week are often great fun to whittle out. Jewellers, off-licences, Smyths Toys, Curry's etc. Multiple PCs and iPads each year. How many of those does a carpenter really need !!


    (FID = Fired Into a Drawer )


    Construction client had invoice for a "mixer" from Harvey Norman. €900 coffee machine!!


  • Registered Users Posts: 958 ✭✭✭Stratvs


    berettaman wrote: »
    Construction client had invoice for a "mixer" from Harvey Norman. €900 coffee machine!!

    I suppose mixing coffee with water qualifies as a mixer of sorts. I'm sure his intentions were honourable.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,863 ✭✭✭hold my beer


    berettaman wrote: »
    Okay, there is a certain advert on radio that does my head in. If you have to go into a dustbin to look for receipts I don't want you as a client.:mad:


    I absolutely despise that stupid ad. Fingers crossed it only attracts the worst type of clients to said bunch of chancers.

    It's up there with Eddie Hobbs and his countermeasures ad - absolute chancer.


  • Registered Users Posts: 624 ✭✭✭gudede


    Had a good giggle reading these.

    Once asked a doctor where was he income from a certain sports team. Told me he does nothing for them.

    Replied, never know you had a twin, who was running onto the pitch last week.


  • Registered Users Posts: 553 ✭✭✭berettaman


    Once worked in a practice where we would sometimes have lunch at our desks during busy times. (I know, I know..)

    One lunch time the phone rings and a junior answers it. A client was asking about getting the VAT back on a chainsaw.
    The junior went through what was allowable and "wholly and exclusively", S.80 TCA etc A beautiful text book answer about 8 mins long.
    Audit manager came in, heard the last 30 seconds and asked for the phone.
    " Hi Mr X, you are not Vat registered, so the answer is no.."

    Still makes me smile to this day..:D


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  • Registered Users Posts: 958 ✭✭✭Stratvs


    The current file on my desk brought this incident back to me which happened a good few years back (retired farmer). He was in the office and said he was looking at setting up a 5yr land lease to get the relevant tax reliefs and would I draw up the lease for him. Said no we don't do that you need to go to your solicitor. His answer ......"but he'd charge me". It taught me a big lesson about how much stuff does get done for nothing.


  • Registered Users Posts: 553 ✭✭✭berettaman


    Once worked in a thriving decent sized practice in a city outside Dublin.

    The partners had the Reception area repainted and a general spruce up. Very nice.
    I was in reception one day and a "small farmer" ambles up with his books. He was notoriously mean and religiously slow to pay his fees. He invented fee resistance even though he had more money than he knew what to do with. His fee was always on the low side and always late.

    He casts his eye around the new reception and says "I suppose I am paying for this..":D


  • Registered Users Posts: 553 ✭✭✭berettaman


    berettaman wrote: »
    Practice life update.

    2020 form 11s have the PUP amount received on them. very handy. However it is not always added to other DSP income received amount so don't take the first figure you see.;)


    Well, don't take the first figure you see.Indeed!
    The Preloaded Form 11s often have incorrect PUP amount on them.

    Some have the first/second payment of 2021 included on them depending whether the client has ceased PUP claim or not.


  • Registered Users Posts: 553 ✭✭✭berettaman


    Stratvs wrote: »
    ... Said no we don't do that you need to go to your solicitor. His answer ......"but he'd charge me". It taught me a big lesson about how much stuff does get done for nothing.


    I have been thinking about this post.
    There is a tonne of stuff that we do for clients as accountants in practice that we don't charge for.
    Met an accountant a few years ago that mapped everything he did for clients in a year on an excel sheet and he used to have a menu of fees for clients. CSO survey form €30, salary cert for employee, €30 etc
    It all adds up!


  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators Posts: 10,281 Mod ✭✭✭✭Jim2007


    berettaman wrote: »
    I have been thinking about this post.
    There is a tonne of stuff that we do for clients as accountants in practice that we don't charge for.
    Met an accountant a few years ago that mapped everything he did for clients in a year on an excel sheet and he used to have a menu of fees for clients. CSO survey form €30, salary cert for employee, €30 etc
    It all adds up!


    Why are you still going on about this? Charge your clients what you are worth, if they don't want to pay show them the door. And if you can't afford to show them the door then perhaps a salaried job might suit you better.


    I spent 30 years doing consulting for various financial institutions, I charged per hour for every minute I was on the clock, did not do freebees nor give discounts. I always considered it my problem if I failed to charge the client enough. If you don't value yourself no one else will. You can always do something more useful with the time you spend dealing with time wasters.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 553 ✭✭✭berettaman


    Jim2007 wrote: »
    Why are you still going on about this? Charge your clients what you are worth, if they don't want to pay show them the door. And if you can't afford to show them the door then perhaps a salaried job might suit you better.


    I spent 30 years doing consulting for various financial institutions, I charged per hour for every minute I was on the clock, did not do freebees nor give discounts. I always considered it my problem if I failed to charge the client enough. If you don't value yourself no one else will. You can always do something more useful with the time you spend dealing with time wasters.


    Respectfully, this is the first time commenting on this..so not "still going on" about it. Check the posts.
    And thanks for the free advice.:D (See what I did there!);)


  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators Posts: 10,281 Mod ✭✭✭✭Jim2007


    berettaman wrote: »
    Respectfully, this is the first time commenting on this..so not "still going on" about it. Check the posts.
    And thanks for the free advice.:D (See what I did there!);)

    You have been rabbiting on about this since early last November.... and no it’s not free advice it’s common business sense, if one of your clients was under charging for their services and giving stuff away for free, while at the same time complaining that he was no making money, how would you advise him?

    I work to live not the other way around. I don’t do overtime because it not only impacts me, but my wife, kids, family and friends, the people I want spend my time with. So when I work, I concentrate on the stuff that generates income, I work for clients that appreciate my services and are willing to pay for it, the rest I kick to the curb PDQ.

    There are many deserving charities out there, worthy of our time and efforts and mean tight fisted clients don’t met the bill.

    It’s embarrassing to hear a business advisor complaining about his inability to manage his own business. Do you really thing it attracts clients or for that matter helps the rest of the profession attract clients?


  • Registered Users Posts: 553 ✭✭✭berettaman


    Jim2007 wrote: »

    You have been rabbiting on about this since early last November.... and no it’s not free advice it’s common business sense, if one of your clients was under charging for their services and giving stuff away for free, while at the same time complaining that he was no making money, how would you advise him?


    Respectfully, I do not see how I have been rabbiting on this topic since November.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,863 ✭✭✭hold my beer


    Such an agressive manner Jim. I get your point, but it's nice to be nice.


  • Registered Users Posts: 624 ✭✭✭gudede


    berettaman wrote: »
    I have been thinking about this post.
    There is a tonne of stuff that we do for clients as accountants in practice that we don't charge for.
    Met an accountant a few years ago that mapped everything he did for clients in a year on an excel sheet and he used to have a menu of fees for clients. CSO survey form €30, salary cert for employee, €30 etc
    It all adds up!

    Menu of fee’s is a good idea, especially for the smaller stuff. I might borrow that idea. Thanks

    Do think, the younger generation will force accountants to be more transparent on fees. Bookkeeping can be done cheaper and cheaper. Clients don't see value and it’s up to us to justify our fees.

    On the plus side, audit fees should increase.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,683 ✭✭✭barneystinson


    I don't have time to read back through all the posts, but I see Jim's in. Have we reached any or all of the following yet:

    - that he trained in one of the Big 4,
    - that it was 30 years ago and he then moved on to bigger and better things
    - how great it is living in Switzerland
    - a general smug air of self satisfaction and superiority / condescension.


  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators Posts: 10,281 Mod ✭✭✭✭Jim2007


    I don't have time to read back through all the posts, but I see Jim's in. Have we reached any or all of the following yet:

    - that he trained in one of the Big 4,
    - that it was 30 years ago and he then moved on to bigger and better things
    - how great it is living in Switzerland
    - a general smug air of self satisfaction and superiority / condescension.

    Of course you didn't.

    But if you are running your own practice and you decide to under charge and do freebees then that is on you, no one else. There is no point blaming the clients, they are doing exactly what they should be doing - trying to get the services they need as cheaply as possible.

    So except it or change it, it's up to you....


  • Registered Users Posts: 883 ✭✭✭DmanDmythDledge


    Don't agree with all of Jim's posts here but the last one is spot on. There's an outrageous amount of firms that do stuff FOC for clients - CT returns, tax affairs letters, payroll returns, small income tax returns. Many that are afraid to charge don't because of lack of confidence of the quality of services they're providing. There's a reason there's firms of similar size and staff numbers that turnover <€1m and some that are >€2m


  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators Posts: 10,281 Mod ✭✭✭✭Jim2007


    Don't agree with all of Jim's posts here but the last one is spot on. There's an outrageous amount of firms that do stuff FOC for clients - CT returns, tax affairs letters, payroll returns, small income tax returns. Many that are afraid to charge don't because of lack of confidence of the quality of services they're providing. There's a reason there's firms of similar size and staff numbers that turnover <€1m and some that are >€2m

    I’m direct, it’s a habit I picked up over 30 years working in environments where people are direct. Some people don’t like it, I get that, but at this stage I’m not going to change. So use the ignore button, that’s what its there for.

    Clients are business people and they are doing what you would expect then to do - keep their costs to a minimum and you can’t blame them for that. You are not the only one they are going hit up for free stuff and you are not the only one telling them no, it’s the answer they are expecting, because they are not in the habit of giving their stuff away for free!

    Your skills and time are valuable, if it was not so, clients would not be asking for it for free. If you want to succeed you need to be cold and calculating about it. Loss making clients cost you twice - they won’t pay and they take up time that would be better spent on working for profitable clients, looking for new business, doing some deserving charity work or personal time.

    Nobody forced any of us to go into business nor give stuff away for free, it’s a situation that we are responsible for and only we can change it. So I don’t see the point in complaining about a situation that you are responsible for and only you can change.


  • Registered Users Posts: 36 The world over


    A bit late to the discussion, sole practitioner here.
    I agree that Accountants need to be more diligent when they arrive at charging fees. Its a hard earned qualification and we need to learn from solicitors in how we charge. Solicitors are excellent at detailing and charging out for every item of so called work.
    On the work front Revenue have certainly improved their MyEnquiries response times which is reassuring. Hopefully we wont have to deal with Wage subsidies for a while again.
    It will be interesting to see how the accountancy profession develops over the next 10 years. I still find it difficult to get some small clients to pay for a simple book-keeping online package. Some of them prefer to keep it manual, obviously the slightly extra cost is their main sticking point.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 55 ✭✭relevanc


    A bit late to the discussion, sole practitioner here.
    I agree that Accountants need to be more diligent when they arrive at charging fees. Its a hard earned qualification and we need to learn from solicitors in how we charge. Solicitors are excellent at detailing and charging out for every item of so called work.
    On the work front Revenue have certainly improved their MyEnquiries response times which is reassuring. Hopefully we wont have to deal with Wage subsidies for a while again.
    It will be interesting to see how the accountancy profession develops over the next 10 years. I still find it difficult to get some small clients to pay for a simple book-keeping online package. Some of them prefer to keep it manual, obviously the slightly extra cost is their main sticking point.

    I wonder if the difference between solicitors and us accountants may be the fact that the profession is not protected in the same way?
    What I mean is, a client doesn’t always know the difference between a regulated accountant and a non-regulated ‘accountant’ acting for them.

    I was asked to quote for a company last week looking for vat, payroll, bookkeeping, FS, CT and directors returns x2.
    They had already received a quote for €1,500 from another accountant.
    I told them I couldn’t compete and so wouldn’t be prepared to quote.
    I don’t know how some accountants can value their time so low! #Race to the bottom

    I was getting caught with a lot of unbillable work. I now email on a quote for any work that falls out of scope and request the clients approval in advance of commencement. I’ve had no issues to date. I actually think that my clients have appreciated the fee transparency. I now realise the problem was mine and I was setting the expectation of freebies.


  • Registered Users Posts: 553 ✭✭✭berettaman


    A bit late to the discussion, sole practitioner here.
    I agree that Accountants need to be more diligent when they arrive at charging fees. Its a hard earned qualification and we need to learn from solicitors in how we charge. Solicitors are excellent at detailing and charging out for every item of so called work.
    On the work front Revenue have certainly improved their MyEnquiries response times which is reassuring. Hopefully we wont have to deal with Wage subsidies for a while again.
    It will be interesting to see how the accountancy profession develops over the next 10 years. I still find it difficult to get some small clients to pay for a simple book-keeping online package. Some of them prefer to keep it manual, obviously the slightly extra cost is their main sticking point.


    The detailed records of what gets done is a good point. Having a good list of what was actually done makes for less quibbles.
    I think a good network is important to get an idea of what the "going rate" is for different types of work.
    I think Covid has helped "convert" lot of clients towards software and cloud based bookkeeping solutions that can only help us.


  • Registered Users Posts: 36 The world over


    relevanc wrote: »
    I wonder if the difference between solicitors and us accountants may be the fact that the profession is not protected in the same way?
    What I mean is, a client doesn’t always know the difference between a regulated accountant and a non-regulated ‘accountant’ acting for them.

    I was asked to quote for a company last week looking for vat, payroll, bookkeeping, FS, CT and directors returns x2.
    They had already received a quote for €1,500 from another accountant.
    I told them I couldn’t compete and so wouldn’t be prepared to quote.
    I don’t know how some accountants can value their time so low! #Race to the bottom

    I was getting caught with a lot of unbillable work. I now email on a quote for any work that falls out of scope and request the clients approval in advance of commencement. I’ve had no issues to date. I actually think that my clients have appreciated the fee transparency. I now realise the problem was mine and I was setting the expectation of freebies.

    You were dead right not to quote. That is a ridiculously low price considering the responsibility involved.


  • Registered Users Posts: 553 ✭✭✭berettaman


    You were dead right not to quote. That is a ridiculously low price considering the responsibility involved.




    I think I can beat this. I was asked to match a quote for an admittedly small sole trader. (Accounts and form 11) €500 including VAT.:eek:
    I declined.


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,251 ✭✭✭paul71


    Stratvs wrote: »
    What are the strangest things you found in a box/bag of records that came in?

    Here
    1) part eaten bacon sandwich
    2) draft of a love letter from an elderly bachelor farmer to ...?
    3) not strange but certainly happens often - unopened Revenue letters

    Had the stale food, the insect investations, dried blood quite often from butchers. The most interesting was the reciept for various sex toys.


  • Registered Users Posts: 553 ✭✭✭berettaman


    Practice update:


    Revenue are doing a "sweep" on the 21st May for outstanding returns and revoking the tax clearance certs of non compliant tax payers.


    I am unsure if this is all sectors but I know they are doing Not for profit entities and those with sporting tax exemptions.

    I know that while Covid pandemic measures were in place they were parking the usual checks but that is ending.

    Might be of interest if anyone has clients in that sector.

    Bottom line: As Covid restrictions ease expect the Revenue to revert to normality also so Get the returns in!


  • Registered Users Posts: 883 ✭✭✭DmanDmythDledge


    Has anyone been asked to do tax affairs letter for the bank for companies that have availed of debt warehousing? If so, did you include details of debt warehoused in the letter (I can't see how that can be left out) and if so did it effect the bank application?


  • Registered Users Posts: 958 ✭✭✭Stratvs


    Has anyone been asked to do tax affairs letter for the bank for companies that have availed of debt warehousing? If so, did you include details of debt warehoused in the letter (I can't see how that can be left out) and if so did it effect the bank application?

    I had to do one for the bank to go with an annual review last November. Client was also looking for some additional working capital facilities. I gave normal letter including the warehoused items with a specific note about them being deferred and also a link to the Revenue measures on warehousing (in case the reviewer was not familiar with the measures). At that point it was assumed the warehoused items would be falling due for payment to commence this September or so. Initially the reviewer got somewhat, how will I put it, 'perturbed' and couldn't understand how there could be any amounts due. After educating them somewhat on the realities that self-employed people in hospitality faced through & following lockdown 1 they completed the review and allowed the additional facilities.


  • Registered Users Posts: 883 ✭✭✭DmanDmythDledge


    Thanks for that. Gonna stick with it so. Not like its information they wouldn't have from financial statements provided anyway, if they can understand them


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  • Registered Users Posts: 36 The world over


    I am just trying to upload financial statements with B1 Form on the CORE system but when I select the respective file it does'nt do anything. Am I missing something? This is my first one on the new system.


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