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Monday, February 09, 2009

Crazy, busy, need time to breathe....or not!

Yes, it's tax season, my busiest time of the year. Don't get me wrong, I truly love the activity, since I have been doing this for over 30 years, I must. I have no secretary or receptionist, just thedaughter who helps me file, answer the phone (when she is awake), and call clients for pickups. Although technically tax season begins January 1st, I normally do not get busy till February 1st, as I prefer my clients to have ALL documentation before I prepare the return. This year has been a little out of the norm, as the IRS requirements of a January 31st deadline for taxpayers to receive documents has been changed to February 15th. It never fails that at least a couple of clients are in a rush to file - and WHAM - after preparation, they call because they have received additional information. Tsk. Tsk. Then they have the nerve to get upset because I charge a fee to redo a return.

I have a decent clientele of almost 500 - and that is probably because I am quick and efficient and I CHARGE NEXT TO NOTHING. When my former partner and I started our business in the 70's, we named our business such that it implies "low prices." Our philosophy was and remains to this day - that people pay so much in taxes, they should not have to pay an arm and a leg to get their money back. Thus the reason for a large client base.

My partner and I split up in 1996, and we each developed our individual business, with me keeping the original business name. At first, the split was a little strained, but after five years, we caved and let bygones be bygones. Now, we split the cost of our tax program, which eases my financial burden. Some have no idea what this business entails - I will try to be brief here in describing what I provide.

  • a paper copy of prepared return
  • a presentation folder w/ all pertinent info regarding my business (address-phone #'s)
  • a cover sheet with detailed info on refund/payment and how to sign documents
  • all necessary envelopes - addressed to proper agencies
  • normally a 24-48 hour turn around period for preparation
  • will schedule evening and weekend appointments at convenience of clients
  • will pick up information at homes when requested - and deliver (usually the elderly)
  • I keep a paper copy and backed up copy of all returns
  • will help clients deal with any problems from tax agencies
  • will assist with any audits that may be required (no audits since 1998)

I'm sure there are many other things I provide, but can't think of any at the moment. In all honesty, I kept most of our original clients - for reasons I will not relate here. I get referrals every year which is a good thing, as I usually have the occasional "death" of a client also.

Today was one of those crazy days...two clients show up within 10 minutes of each other...4 clients appeared to pick-up their returns at the same time...the phone rang constantly...had to meet a client downtown in between all this turmoil. And then the dog decided she had to puke - which entirely capped off a terrific morning. Psycho kitty will make an appearance soon I am sure.

I promise not to neglect any of my fellow bloggers, but right now, I have decided to step back for the remainder of this day and chill. Later this evening, after thegrandson has gone to bed, I will try to catch up on your postings. So, play nice everyone, and check with ya later...........


Annette said...

Whew... you made me tired just reading it....lol

Hope you got your coffee and a rest with your feet up.

Don't forget the President speaks tonight too.

Liberality said...

You are busy!!!

rennratt said...

You officially have a pass. Now and forevermore.

We completed our tax return over the weekend. The lady that worked with us may be my favorite ever. She took her time with us - and helped my husband with additional reports/forms/deductions. [He works full time at job 1, and is considered a 'contract worker' at the church.]

People like you are truly appreciated, I promise. So thank you!

Evil Twin's Wife said...

I can't believe you do all that! I get stressed just doing our own taxes (one little measly return each year). You are truly amazing!

themom said...

Annette: Wouldn't miss the Prez, although I hope my "24" will still be on too. I'm exhausted

Rennratt: Thanks for the pass. I learned to "love" doing taxes from my banker father when I was a teenager. Of course a lot of changes have taken place during that time.

Liberality: Now I have to schedule a "day off" to run the vacuum, mop the floor, clean the bathroom, wash the windows, etc. I'm getting too old for this crap.

Evil Twins Wife: It is a "love." After all these years, I have developed methods of organization that make the computation and collating fairly easy. Thanks.

Chickie said...

Poor dog. The stress of tax season takes another victim.