Aside from some top notch tax preparation software, a computer, fax machine, cell phone, printer/copier, and some general bookkeeping software like Quickbooks, a tax services business does not require a lot of start-up capital or expensive equipment. Assuming that you have the computer and an Internet connection, you can get your tax services business up and running for $1500-$2000. Now this figure assumes that you will operate some sort of Internet-based tax service at first or else you will need to include money to pay office rent and utilities. You could actually do it for less but since you can use the capital investment as a tax write-off anyway, why not get the better equipment and make life easier on you?
Skills and Experience
While having an education background in tax law and preparation is a great tool to have, having the experience in this field is essential! Taxes can be very complicated especially for businesses so you don't want to start a tax services business unless you already have 3-5 years (and more is definitely better and will help you generate business quicker!) of experience, do not consider this as a small business option! Liability issues arise quickly in tax preparation matters, which is why this business should only be considered by true tax preparation professionals.
Charges and Earnings
Tax preparation services typically charge based off of the number of forms they help fill out. Special deductions require different forms and every single form means more potential revenue for your business. Clearly you will be busiest from January thru mid-April but you can also make steady revenue throughout the year by offering tax planning to help clients prepare for the following year's taxes. A typical fee charged for helping a client complete their federal and state income taxes range from $100-$200.
There are a large number of web-based tax services businesses operating and this is due to the low overhead and large market which is possible for people operating any Internet business. While many website owners choose to develop their sites by adding a lot of content and links to other sites in order to build search engine rankings, you could sidestep this entire process by using pay-per-click advertising. Basically, you bid on keywords like “tax preparation service" and agree to pay the search engine company your bid amount every time someone clicks on your link (which happens to appear on the front page of the search results off to the side of the sites that opt to attain those rankings through content and search engine optimization). This is a simple short cut to the top of the rankings that could really get your business up and running in a hurry!
Chris Navi I am a true freelance internet advertiser who dabbles in website design. You can check out resources for having a profitable mail business at my website
Also check out the 10 best places to advertise online that are completely FREE at: