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lsylvain
03-18-2003, 09:23 AM
Has anyone ever seen or heard of a CPA that specializes in green industry businesses? The reason I ask is I will have my CPA certificate in about a year and would think I would enjoy still being involved with the industry.

If not, what services would you like to see out of a CPA related to the GI?

I am not just talking about book keeping and taxes. More speaking of consulting type services.

Here are the things that I have thought of as services off the top of my head:

cost accounting:
Job Costing:
Financial planning:
Bugeting:
Help with H2-B employees
Pay Roll designed for seasonal employees

bruces
03-18-2003, 09:43 AM
Originally posted by lsylvain
Has anyone ever seen or heard of a CPA that specializes in green industry businesses? The reason I ask is I will have my CPA certificate in about a year and would think I would enjoy still being involved with the industry.

If not, what services would you like to see out of a CPA related to the GI?

Speaking as an experienced CPA who is now involved in the green industry, I don't see the accounting for this industry as being specialized at all. It is just a fairly run of the mill service business as far as accounting is concerned.

You might be able to market your green industry knowledge if you had several clients in the business, but it might be tough to get clients in the business if you are competing with them.

They might not want to share their personal business information with you.

My opinion, for what it is worth.

lsylvain
03-18-2003, 10:01 AM
If I went ahead with this idea I would not run/own a GI company.

I beg to differ, about the GI being similar to other service industries.

1. we have seasonal employees
2. we have months of down time to budget for
3. Fierce competition (from scrubs to giant corps)
4. hundreds of different service to offer.
5. differentiation of product
6. and many more.

Fvstringpicker
03-18-2003, 10:47 AM
Sounds kinda like you've already made up your mind. I am a CPA, Ret. engineer, and owner of a small LCO. I agree with bruces that as far as accounting goes, its your routine debits and credits. You made a couple of points about the nature of the business. Here, your problem would be that your larger, well established companies, are already set up with larger, well established firms. Many small soles cannot afford much more than routine bookkeeping and tax work. I was suprised at the number of LCO that are run by ex-exeutives/professionals. In Peachtree City, north of here, seems like every laid off pilot and airline worker has a LCO. As far as a consulting practice, it's sorta like you said, "Fierce competition (from scrubs to giant corps)" Just a caveat, for what its worth.

lawnworker
03-18-2003, 10:59 AM
Bruce, I have a question for you. If I was to set my business up on formal accounting procedure, How would I address IRS section 179 depreciated Mowers? Would they have any value as assets. I have never used formal accounting before, but I am now becoming interested in making the change, due to the fact I am taking accounting at college.

bruces
03-18-2003, 11:42 AM
Originally posted by lawnworker
Bruce, I have a question for you. If I was to set my business up on formal accounting procedure, How would I address IRS section 179 depreciated Mowers? Would they have any value as assets. I have never used formal accounting before, but I am now becoming interested in making the change, due to the fact I am taking accounting at college.

Yes, they have value as assets. You would record the assets at cost and show the offsetting depreciation taken in the accumulated depreciation account. The net value comes out to 0, but you've got the assets on the books.

If you want to complicate things more, you can use "book" depreciation for financial statement purposes (write off over estimated useful life rather than 179), and tax or 179 depreciation for tax purposes. Then you have an adjustment from the deductions on the financial statements to the deductions on the tax return.

That should give a truer picture of the value of the assets, as they are being written off over time.

bruces
03-18-2003, 11:47 AM
Originally posted by lsylvain
If I went ahead with this idea I would not run/own a GI company.

I beg to differ, about the GI being similar to other service industries.

1. we have seasonal employees
2. we have months of down time to budget for
3. Fierce competition (from scrubs to giant corps)
4. hundreds of different service to offer.
5. differentiation of product
6. and many more.

Your points noted are valid but I still don't see a difference in the accounting and bookkeeping.


From a consulting standpoint, if you develop an expertise you might have something to sell, but it is going to have to be to larger companies, not most of the members on here.

It seems that a lot of the LCO's are smaller companies that either don't or won't spend the money for professional accounting services on a regulare basis (maybe other than for tax preparation).

lsylvain
03-18-2003, 12:54 PM
You don't think that you could market consulting to the smaller companies?

I would have gotten a CPA when I first started the biz if there was a firm out there that new something other than debits and credits. One of my mentors in Acct only deals in service business and only carries about 10 clients and all of them are just booming. All of them sole-props and mostly construction companies. He helps them decide what projects to take on, what to avoid. One of his guys has never put a nickle of his own money in the biz with the use of short term financing.

I may be wrong, but it just seems like as many people that come to LS for help, there would be plenty of people willing to pay for it.

anyway.. it was just a thought

Buddy Markley
03-18-2003, 02:59 PM
A CPA is a professional in the art of managing money matters.

So when you sit down to get a free consultation then you should be able to get a feel about their knowledge. He/she should be able to conform to any biz that has a need for his services.

Tax laws and money matters follow set patterns and laws, other than that I can think of a need for a "Green Biz" CPA.

Just thinking out loud.

Buddy

J&R
03-18-2003, 03:09 PM
I married one 33 years ago. so you know how much it cost me for one. she is still here doing my books.

Buddy Markley
03-18-2003, 03:23 PM
J&R,

Thats cool man, 33years is very respectable I wish you many more.

PS. thanks, your post has shed some light on my writing style,
I have edit my last post to be more gender friendly.

Sorry

Buddy...

lsylvain
03-18-2003, 10:44 PM
Cool deal J&R,

Both me and the future Mrs have business degrees specializing in Acct and I'm working on a second degree in Accounting now, maby a masters a little later.

I figure there is going to be a big boom in the accounting profession. Figure every business that dealt with AA is getting new Representation. And they were just one.

It is going to be interesting to see what happens.

lsylvain
03-20-2003, 11:00 AM
I'm confused. 130 something views of this thread but only 8 people have voted on the poll.

With the 8 people that did vote it looks like my idea is a good one. Of course 8 people isn't enough to make any sort of judgment call.

HBFOXJr
03-20-2003, 02:46 PM
The poll was cloudy, confusing and not articulated well. Your friends 10 accounts gross how many $'s per year combined? Take the combined gross of 8 responders here and we'll look like chump change. Their are already business and specialty consultants available to the green industry and I'll bet no one in your area is yelling that they can't find one.

Your education and chosen profession are fine, but the idea of marketing to the green industry as a major profit center for you will not be profitable unless you have proven methods and ideas that you can sell on a regional or national basis. Even the major players on a national level market themselves out side the GI. Those of us that use advanced services are only a very small percent of those in the green industry. If you are thinking local GI business, think of it as just a small piece of a larger puzzle.

Seasonal business and budgeting is nothing special. If you are a retailer where Christmas is a biggie in your year, you hire seasonal help and budget for slower months. If you are in construction with large projects the same exists. The GI is not unique, it is just another day at the office.

lsylvain
03-20-2003, 10:01 PM
As far as my friend goes he only has 10 clients because that's all he wants. He lives of all the stock he owns. (I wish I bought into crispy cream when they first started)

Those 10 clients are just regular clients not part of the tax business.

I tried to make the poll as easy to understand as possible and still get results that were meaningful.

Answer:

#1 if you currently have a CPA and would hire a new CPA because they are GI specialized

#2 if you currently have a CPA and would hire a new CPA because they are GI specialized if your current CPA was not satisfactory

#3 if you don't have a CPA right now, but you would hire a CPA if they were GI specialized.

#4 if you have a CPA now and would not get another CPA firm specialized in the GI

#5 if you don't have a CPA now and would not get a GI specialized firm.

I hope this clears it up

hoyboy
03-20-2003, 10:51 PM
Hmmmm......

I too am a CPA. I see several other CPA's here as well...

I wonder, with the demise of AA, it looks like the landscape industry will be seeing a lot more start up's in the near future!

For what it's worth, I agree that there's nothing special about accounting for a landsape company. Consulting? Sure, there's some intricacies (sp?) involved. But like the other gent said, I doubt a company grossing 100K is going to spend a couple grand on consulting....beer or fishing, maybe, but not consulting.

Dan Norton
Hoy Landscaping, Inc.

lsylvain
03-29-2003, 03:08 AM
The fall of AA is going to be great for me, a fresh, untainted CPA. lol

The AICPA, SEC, and FASB need to get with the program and start regulating or the government is going to try and do it for them.

It is ridiculous that no-one caught them sooner. Blatant disregard for GAAP and GAAS and everyone just looks the other way. I think that if you do consulting services for a company you should not be allowed to engage in an audit for that firm. You just can't be independent when you basically have to give an unqualified opinion or your firm looses millions is business.

anyway...

hoyboy
03-29-2003, 08:36 AM
Yep. And that's all we need....get the grubby little politicians to start regulating the accounting industry and we'll really see things get screwed up.

Dan Norton