How much do outsourced accounting services cost

Accounting: Do it yourself or outsource?

Stefan Maron June 07, 2016 26916 views
If you start your own business, you are usually faced with the question of how the bookkeeping should be regulated. For financial reasons, many founders prefer to take care of it themselves, especially at the beginning. But you should Do not underestimate the technical requirements for proper accounting. Doing bookkeeping on your own is only an option if you have at least a basic understanding of the subject. The local IHKs, but also adult education centers and private institutes offer advanced training courses in which you can learn the basics of accounting. You can also find many articles online on topics such as finance, controlling and bookkeeping that can be of further help. The question is, however, whether you actually acquire professional knowledge in crash courses or through articles - and whether you could not actually earn more money with your own business in the time you spend studying accounting. As far as the financial side is concerned, one should also note that the annual financial statements (or the tax return), which the tax advisor then has to make, can possibly be more time-consuming and therefore more expensive if the bookkeeping is not done by you beforehand Experts | was settled. Nevertheless, it can be useful, especially for start-ups and their employees, to learn how bookkeeping works. Even if you later outsource the accounting, you have gained enough knowledge to help you assess the results of the service providers in relation to accounting.

Bookkeeping at the tax advisor

The tax advisor supports the entrepreneur primarily in all tax issues. But his field of activity also includes Accounting for commercial clients. But what does the service cost? Similar to lawyers and doctors, there are certain accounting jobs in Germany Requirements that are regulated by law in the Tax Advisor Fee Ordinance (StBGebV). The fees of tax consultants are therefore far from uniform - the Fee Ordinance only provides a rough framework. The costs for the tax advisor are based, among other things, on Item value. In the case of accounting, this is the annual sales. A so-called “full fee” is assigned to the item value. Depending on the degree of difficulty or effort, the tax advisor can now exhaust this fee to a certain extent and charge his customers more or less. This becomes understandable if you bear in mind, for example, that an entrepreneur with an annual turnover of 100,000 euros can have 150 receipts, but also 1,500 receipts. For the bookkeeping including the accounting of the documents, the monthly fee is 2/10 to 12/10 of a full fee according to the table mentioned (mean 7/10). You can reduce the amount by pre-accounting the receipts. With an income of 100,000 euros, this results in a range of 30 to 180 euros (average: 105 euros). Compared to a freelance accountant, the costs for the client with a tax advisor are usually higher. The advantage, however, is that you only have one contact person for ongoing bookkeeping and the annual financial statements or tax return. In addition, it can be advantageous that the tax advisor also takes account of the bookkeeping valuable tax tips and advice can give.

Bookkeeping by the accountant

A freelance or employed accountant can also do the bookkeeping for your company. He controls and documents all business transactions seamlessly and properly and prepares the annual financial statements. In addition, the accountant also takes care of the asset accounting, in which all long-lived assets are recorded. If necessary, he will also take care of the payroll accounting. In contrast to the tax advisor, however, the accountant cannot draw up annual financial statements. Or more correctly: He can do it, but it must then be checked by an auditor, who in turn must be a tax advisor or auditor. For you, this has the disadvantage that you need two service providers: the accountant for bookkeeping and the tax advisor for annual financial statements or tax returns - unless you want to do this yourself. This is entirely possible because you are not forced to hire a tax advisor. Compared to bookkeeping at a tax advisor, the combination of accountant and tax advisor can prove to be more beneficial for you. Self-employed accountants and accountants can freely agree on the amount of the fees or their salary with the client. If accountants are members of the Federal Association of Independent Accountants and Accountants, they often refer to the association's table of fees for wages and salaries, but are not bound by this when writing their invoices. Another practical side effect of the combination accountant and tax advisor is that both can control each other.

Save time and money with the "cloud solution"

Modern commercial software based on cloud computing gives you completely new possibilities for the division of labor between you and your service provider - regardless of whether you are an accountant or tax advisor. Do you dare to do a little bookkeeping, but still need support from an expert? You can use cloud software to organize some or all of your bookkeeping online yourself and, if necessary, take advantage of the support of an expert. The highlight: Since the software is used over the Internet, you can easily activate your accountant or tax advisor. The annoying handing back and forth of papers and / or files is no longer necessary; You, your employees and your service provider have the same view of the same numbers and can easily book online and send invoices. Cloud software and an accounting service make it possible to combine the advantages of doing it yourself with those of outsourcing! This proves to be a cost-effective, time-saving and safe option, especially for start-ups:
  • You do part of the bookkeeping yourself - that saves costs
  • You get support from an expert - this gives you the security of knowing that everything will be handled properly with a strong partner at your side
  • You have access to your figures at any time - and you are always up to date on the financial situation of your company

Pros and cons: Do your own bookkeeping


  • Learning: building specialist knowledge
  • Save costs
  • Keep an eye on your own company promptly


  • Invest time in building up know-how
  • Allow time and nerves for ongoing bookkeeping, little fun factor
  • Constant doubts as to whether everything is being done correctly in one's own company

Stefan Marron

Stefan Maron is Head of Marketing at Scopevisio. His focus is on digitization and marketing automation.

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