Student loan interest; moving expenses
Don't forget to take these deductions.
How do I find an Adviser?
If all you need is help with your income tax, an enrolled agent can be a less expensive alternative to a CPA. If your financial situation is complex and you need help with tax, financial planning and estate issues, I suggest you find a good certified public accountant. You may not need a separate financial planner, tax accountant/lawyer and estate planner, but if you do, a good CPA will refer you to an office where you can find the help you need.
The best way to find a CPA or an enrolled agent is to ask for referrals from your friends, relatives, neighbors, acquaintances, co-workers and anyone else with financial needs similar to your own.
When you find one or two who will not charge you for an introductory meeting, set up appointments with them. For tax professionals, the best time to do this is between April 15 and
Licensed professionals must have their licenses displayed. They will usually have their credentials framed and accessible. If they don't, I'd wonder why.
At each visit, ask for the cost. There's no hurry; you've lived without a financial professional this long, you can live without one until you find one you like and trust. It is best to start slowly; let him give you a quote to do your tax return, and if it sounds fair, let him do it. If you're happy with the job, the relationship will build from there. If you're not, resume your search.
DOROTHY ROSEN has a master's degree in finance, with a specialization in accounting, from the Kellogg Graduate School at Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill. Rosen has more than 15 years of experience in the financial arena, serving in Illinois and Florida as a certified public accountant, financial consultant, expert witness and educator. She is owner of Dorothy Rosen, CPA, a public accounting firm that serves individuals and small businesses.