Successful CPAs are Savvy CPAs who take all legal measures to help their clients reduce liabilities. In fact, this is one of the main reasons why individuals and businesses rely on CPAs to handle their financial matters. However, even an experienced CPA may not be aware of all of the nuances of business property taxes that pertain to their clients. We have found that many other tax experts struggle with keeping up with the latest property tax industry trends. It is a remarkable amount of focus and effort that Assessment Technologies dedicates to being industry leaders in the area of property tax. Property tax is essential to get accurate because of the enormous, potential impact to the bottom line. Partnering with a focused expert in property taxes will help a CPA deliver a comprehensive financial management service.
Jurisdictions may have entirely different regulations when it comes to which types of property may be taxed. This means that the CPA first needs to know which types of property are considered personal property. For instance, some jurisdictions do not assess a tax on business personal property (BPP), but others do. This distinction can make a significant difference in how much property tax is owed.
Identifying taxable property is not easy. The CPA needs to identify all movable property assets like tools, equipment, machinery, and inventory. These items must be differentiated from other assets, such as computer software programs, which are not taxable. It is important to note that taxes on real estate are separate from taxes assessed on BPP.
CPAs may be responsible for filing an annual compliance list that includes the purchase price of any assets and their current, depreciated value. Being thorough and accurate on these reports helps to ensure that the assessment amount is equitable and correct.
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- Business Personal Property (BPP) – One of the primary jobs of the CPA is to maintain accurate, detailed asset lists for their clients. Clients often pass along information that should be used to update asset lists, but there is a tendency to be less than thorough. For instance, business owners sometimes forget that they no longer have an asset. This means that an item on their list is being used to make their personal property taxes higher, even though they no longer have the benefit of this asset. Known as a “ghost asset,” CPAs do everything they can to eliminate these items so that they don’t affect their client’s tax bill. It’s also important to keep in mind how quickly technology evolves. Today’s cutting-edge equipment is tomorrow’s obsolete paperweight. This makes it imperative to ensure accuracy when evaluating precisely how much business personal assets are worth.
- Abatements and Exemptions – Jurisdictions frequently provide ways for businesses to lessen their tax burden. However, they don’t necessarily make these programs widely known. The more a CPA knows about the abatements and exemptions that may be available, the better equipped they will be to make sure that eligible clients take advantage of them. Complying with the requirements for these abatements and exemptions can be tricky, which is why it may be helpful to bring in someone who has extensive experience with locating and exploiting these money-saving opportunities.
- Managing Tax Compliance – CPAs must ensure compliance through various steps. This begins with completing a timely and thorough property tax rendition, which the jurisdiction reviews to prepare an assessment. Once the appraisal is received, the CPA checks it for accuracy against the rendition. Subsequently, the tax bill arrives and must be checked for accuracy with the assessment. If the CPA notices any discrepancies at any time during this process, then they may have to file an appeal or protest.
Rely on Assessment Technologies
Well-qualified professionals are available at every stage of the process to help CPAs, and their clients ensure that their businesses are being reasonably and accurately assessed. They assist with identifying the taxable property, managing detailed asset lists and finding appropriate abatements and exemptions. When it comes to managing tax compliance, Assessment Technologies property tax professionals are similarly helpful. It makes sense to work a team of focused property tax experts that have this done efficiently and effectively, so you don’t have to. Contact us today to learn more about how they can help you.