How to Find the Best Accountants in Santa Rosa CA
From CPAs to ABAs, local accountants in Sonoma County and bookkeeping services are an indispensable part of finance management. Performing your own bookkeeping services can be difficult and time-consuming. Hiring professional accounting services in Sonoma County can ease the burden and protect you from errors and omissions.
The following research by The Prime Buyer's Report identifies the best local accountants in Sonoma County and issues related to hiring them.
Updated June 03, 2020
How to Find the Best Accountants in Santa Rosa CA
Find Qualified, Safe, Honest Accountants and Bookkeepers in Sonoma County and Beyond
Accountants in Sonoma County are required to be licensed by the California Board of Accountacy by meeting the requirements for education, experience, and passing an exam. Bookkeepers are not required to be licensed though they cannot advertise themselves as public accountants.
Neither accountants nor bookkeepers are legally required to have professional liability insurance to protect you the client from financial loss due to an accounting error; however, all accountants or bookkeepers bearing The Prime Buyer's Report Top Ten symbol do have that liability insurance for your protection, in addition to passing all of the other requirements for Prime Buyer's Report Top Ten status, such as our research phone calls to their previous clients to verify high satisfaction, hiring only documented workers, sufficient length of time in business, clean complaint record, and more.
Local Accountants & Bookkeepers in Sonoma County Specialize in Different Areas of Finance
To find the best accountants in Sonoma County to suit your specific needs, be aware of the various certifications that accountants may have. Different credentialing means different areas of expertise, so find the local Sonoma County accountant that offers the types of services you need and the customer service and personal attention you deserve.
Good accountants in Santa Rosa CA may hold certificates for CPA (Certified Public Accountancy) or GCA (Certified General Accountancy). These local accountants can perform general and public accounting tasks.
For management accounting, accountants may hold a CMA title (Certified Management Accountant) or an ACMA title (Associate Certified Management Accountant). ABA or ABAA (Accredited Business Accountants) and PA (Public Accountants) accountants practice personal accountancy and offer accounting services to individuals and families.
Good Forensic Accountants in Sonoma County CA
What is forensic accounting? The word forensic refers to acceptable use in a court of law, and having been scientifically and objectively discovered thorough review of physical evidence.
Forensic accountants in Sonoma County are also referred to as forensic auditors or investigative auditors. Many large accounting firms in Sonoma County have forensic accounting departments, and many smaller firms or sole practitioners specialize in forensic accounting in Sonoma County and operate solely as forensic accountants.
Legal disputes that call for forensic accountants to calculate losses and economic damages include lawsuits for breach of contract and negligence claims or simply company acquisitions. Many forensic accountants in Santa Rosa are hired for cases involving assessment for spousal and child support claims.
Numerous Services Are Performed by Bookkeeping Services & Accountants in Santa Rosa CA
The various accountants in Sonoma County are qualified and experienced in a number of different accounting areas, including public accounting, management accounting, project accounting, cash-basis accounting, chartered accounting, cost accounting, accrual basis accounting, small business accounting and fund accounting.
CPAs can usually advise on estate and trust planning and administration. Good accountants have access to much more finely tuned software than average financial laymen. Counsel on auditing, audit quality or compensation are some of the services offered by accountants in Santa Rosa CA.
Some Local Bookkeeping Services & Accountants in Sonoma County CA Are Much Better Than Others
The Prime Buyer's Report lists these accountants in Sonoma County: Moss Adams Accountants Santa Rosa CA, Zainer Rinehart Clarke Accountants Santa Rosa CA, Andersen & Co Santa Rosa CA, Dal Poggetto & Company LLP Santa Rosa CA, Pisenti & Brinker Accountants Petaluma CA, Brush Bernard Mitchell Healdsburg CA, North Coast Financial Services: David Von Bima, EA Rohnert Park CA. Other accountants in Santa Rosa CA that might still be in business include Kuryla & Associates Sebastopol CA, Weibling & Peters Rohnert Park CA.
Questions To Ask Accountants in Santa Rosa CA
When it comes to hiring good accountants in Santa Rosa CA and throughout Sonoma County, ask these questions about their abilities, experience, and credentials:
• How long have the local accountants been practicing accountants in Sonoma County, and how many clients do they now have? (All accounts bearing the Prime Buyer's Report Top Ten symbol have been in business for at least a year or in the industry for more than five years.)
• Are the Sonoma County accountants CPAs (certified public accountants), PAs (public accountants) or small business accountants?
• Do the local accounting experts generally deal with accounting for businesses or for individuals?
• What additional services aside from accounting or bookkeeping, if any, do they offer to their clients?
• How are their fees for accounting services structured?
• Do the local Sonoma County accountants work at a certified accounting firm?
• If you're talking to a multi-person accounting firm, who will handle your work, senior accountants or junior assistants?
• Are the accountants or the Sonoma County accounting company willing to give you the names and numbers of some recent clients you can call as references? (All accountants bearing the Prime Buyer's Report Top Ten symbol have already had client references called by research staff at The Prime Buyer's Report.)
• What kind of education do the local accountants have?
• Which certifications do the Sonoma County accounting professionals hold?
• Will the local accountants show you proof of liability insurance (such as Errors & Omissions), which protects you from financial loss due to mistakes? (All Sonoma County accountants bearing the Prime Buyer's Report Top Ten symbol have already provided proof of liability insurance to research staff at The Prime Buyer's Report.)
• Does the local accountant visit his or her clients, or will you always need to travel to the accountant's office?
• Can you see their accounting credentials? (All local accountants bearing the Prime Buyer's Report Top Ten symbol have already had their certifications verified by research staff at The Prime Buyer's Report.)
• What feedback do the Sonoma County accountants have on your specific accounting issues and needs?
Tips on Accountants in Santa Rosa CA
Take Time Choosing Among Good Accountants in Sonoma County
Don't hire the first local accountants you contact. Take time to properly outline what you need, whether accounting or bookkeeping services, before you hire the professional accountants in Sonoma County, and you'll be more likely to find an accounting and bookkeeping professional that can help you and keep you happy.
Write a Description of the Financial Accounting Job for the Local Accountants
You'll be better equipped to judge the qualifications of local accountants in Sonoma County and your area if you write down the details of your job before you interview any accounting firms or senior accountants. Be clear on your requirements, and be consistent in presenting information to your candidates.
If each of the local accountants sees the same description for the bookkeeping services, accounting services, or other financial services, any variety in responses will be telling of the accountants' ability and expertise. Then you can better judge which Sonoma County CA accountant gives the best responses to your consistent description.
Compile a List of Several Good Accountants in Sonoma County
Contact at least two or three good accountants in Santa Rosa or near you. Remember that cheap accounts in Sonoma County are rarely the best accountants. Like with most services, you usually get what you pay for.
If you insist on quality accounting and bookkeeping services, you can expect to pay a fair rate for a qualified and expert accountant and bookkeeper. Their time is valuable, and paying a fair rate will usually mean a better service than those offered by discount accountants.
Getting quotes from several good CPAs in Sonoma County will help you arrive at a reasonable price range and ultimately determine which local accountant or bookkeeper is best suited to your needs and provides the level of service and expertise you expect.
Know the Areas of Expertise of Local Accountants and CPAs in Sonoma County
There are several levels of certification that accountants may have fulfilled. From CPAs to ACCAs, your accountants' credentials will have a direct bearing on the type (and ultimately, the quality) of service you require.
Ask about each Sonoma County accountant's area of expertise. For example, if you need an accountant to do an audit for legal purposes, make sure your accountant specializes in forensic accounting in Sonoma County. Also, ask questions about each accountant's educational background to see if he or she is right for you.
Know the Qualifications of Local Accountants and Bookkeeping Services
Believe it or not, anyone can call themselves an accountant or bookkeeper, and if they are not certified by an accounting body it means that self-proclaimed accountant doesn't have to abide by any standardized regulations.
Make sure the Sonoma County accountants and bookkeepers you're considering hiring hold certain certifications, such as a CPA or certified public accountant license. Ask to see the accountants' certifications. This will ensure that the bookkeepers' and accountants' practices are regulated by a professional accounting and bookkeeping body.
Maintain Contact with Your Sonoma County Accountants and Bookkeepers
Working with a local accountant is a partnership, so communication is essential. This is an overlooked skill with specialized services, especially accountants and bookkeepers. After all, you're hiring them to maintain your finances so that you don't have to.
Still, you should stay informed about every detail of your accounting situation. If something seems wrong, don't jump to conclusions; call and ask your CPA or accountant when you have even the simplest question about your financial accounting affairs. It's your money, and you have a right to know.
Establish Trust with Your Local Accountant and Bookkeeper
Your accountant and bookkeeper has access to your private records and your entire financial portfolio. You can easily find yourself in a very vulnerable position, so make sure you hire someone you trust. Don't just ask around—also perform background checks on the Sonoma County CA bookkeepers, accountants, CPAs, and accounting analysts.
Resources About Bookkeeping & Accountants in Santa Rosa CA
Regulatory Agencies & Trade Associations Related to Bookkeepers and Accountants in Sonoma County CA
ACFE Association of Certified Fraud Examiners www.acfe.com/forensic-accountant.aspx
AICPA American Institute of Certified Public Accountants www.aicpa.org
AAA Association for Accounting Administration www.cpaadmin.org
AGNI Accountants Global Network International www.agn.org
AGN - North America www.agn-na.org
AICPA American Institute of CPAs www.aicpa.org
BBB The Better Business Bureau www.bbb.com
BKR International www.bkr.com
CALCPA California Society of CPAs www.calcpa.org
CBA California Board of Accountancy www.cba.ca.gov
CPAAI CPA Associates International www.cpaai.com
Diamond Certified www.diamondcertified.org
FCPA Forensic CPA Society www.fcpas.org
IAAER International Association for Accounting Education and Research www.iaaer.org
IGAF International Group of Accounting Firms www.igaf.org
Institute of Certified Forensic Accountants www.forensicglobal.org
NACPC National Association of Certified Public Bookkeepers www.certifiedpublicbokkeeper.org
NASBA National Association of State Boards of Accountancy www.nasba.org
Media Related to Bookkeeping Services and Accounting Services in Sonoma County CA
Accounting and Business Research
Accounting and Finance
The Accounting Review
Behavioral Research in Accounting
Contemporary Accounting Research
CPA Software News
The European Accounting Review
International Journal of Intelligent Systems of Accounting
Issues in Accounting Research
Journal of Accountancy
Journal of Accounting Research
The Journal of Management Accounting Research Practical Accountant
Strategic Finance Magazine
Treasury and Risk
If you are looking for certified public accountants (CPAs), bookkeepers, and accountants, The Prime Buyer's Report provides information about the Top Ten Accountants in Sonoma County CA within the following zip codes:
95403, 95421, 94953, 95407, 95439, 95408, 95476, 95492, 95452, 94923, 95431, 94999, 95472, 95406, 94972, 95409, 94922, 95433, 94954, 95450, 95402, 95480, 95448, 95487, 94952, 95430, 94951, 95436, 95471, 95405, 95446, 95497, 95425, 94927, 95465, 94931, 94975, 95404, 95444, 95486, 95412, 95419, 95462, 94928, 94955, 95401, 95442, 95473, 95441 and 95416
The Prime Buyer's Report provides information for the Top Ten Accountants & Bookkeepers in Sonoma County CA within the following cities:
Agua Caliente, Alexander Valley, Annapolis, Asti, Bloomfield, Bloomfield, Bodega, Bodega Bay, Cazadero, Cloverdale, Cotati, Fallon, Forestville, Fort Ross, Freestone, Fulton, Geyserville, Glen Ellen, Graton, Guerneville, Guernewood, Healdsburg, Jenner, Kenwood, Lakeville, Larkfield, Monte Rio, Occidental, Penngrove, Petaluma, Rohnert Park, Roseland, Russian River, Russian River Mdws, Salmon Creek, Santa Rosa, Schellville, Sebastopol, Sonoma, Stewarts Point Rancheria, The Geysers, Valley Ford, Windsor, Boyes Hot Springs, Camp Meeker, Duncans Mills, El Verano, Eldridge, Fetters Hot Springs, Rio Nido, Sheridan, The Sea Ranch, Villa Grande, Vineburg, Lytton, Mark West, Temelec and Two Rock