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How much does Tax Preparation cost?

Average Price
£150 - £250

What is the price of Tax Preparation?

Want to hire an accountant to help you prepare your taxes? Read our handy guide to find out how much your accountant will charge for their services.

What is Tax Preparation?

If you earn at least £1,000 a year from any self-employment ventures, then you’ll need to declare this to HMRC by completing a tax return.

Tax preparation involves collecting all of the information that will be used to determine how much tax you are liable to pay. Plus other expenses such as national insurance or student loan contributions if applicable. 

Those who work in tax preparation are qualified accountants. They’ll help you create a record of your expenses, which not only helps you keep track of your business, but will ensure the final amount you pay to HMRC is accurate. 

How much does Tax Preparation cost? 

The cost of tax preparation ranges between £150 and £250. The majority of cases will warrant a charge of between £150 and £300. But if you’re a large company, a UK landlord, declaring or capital gains, then the price of tax preparation will be on the higher end of the scale.

Average cost of Tax Preparation
Average cost£250
Minimum cost£150
Maximum cost£600

While the cost of hiring an accountant may seem expensive, compared with preparing and completing your own tax return it will save you a lot of time and hassle. Plus, given it’s so easy to make mistakes, it’s always worth having a professional take care of it for you. 

Given one of the goals of tax preparation is also to look for exemptions, you will likely find that the investment will actually save you money overall. 

What changes the price of Tax Preparation? 

The cost of tax preparation varies depending on several factors, including: 

  • Business type

  • Income level

  • Quality of bookkeeping

  • Additional services

  • Time

  • Experience

  • Location

Business type

Your business type will impact the cost of tax preparation because ultimately it will determine how complex your financial affairs are. For example, if you’re self-employed, working out what you owe is going to be a lot more straightforward versus a company with 250 employees.

As you might expect, those who are employed and self-employed, or solely self-employed will pay the least, starting at around £150 on average. It may only take a few hours (or less) to prepare your accounts, especially if you’ve kept a good record of your income and expenses. 

On the other end of the scale, large businesses can pay anywhere up to £20,000 for tax preparation. Though, such businesses may benefit from a package with their accountant instead, which will reduce costs overall.

Tax Preparation cost by type of business
Type of businessHighest average priceLowest average price
Employed and self-employed£200£150
Self-employed£300£175
Limited company£600£350
Small business (under 50 employees)£1,000£650
Medium-sized business (50 to 249 employees)£10,000£5,000
Large business (above 250 employees)£20,000£10,000

The more aspects your tax return has to incorporate, the more costly the preparation will be. So even if you’re self-employed, if your income is extremely complex (especially if it involves foreign income) then the cost of tax preparation will likely be higher. 

Income level

Every country has different income bands, which will determine how much tax a person needs to pay. Generally speaking, if you’re on a lower income your tax preparation will be easier to complete, therefore cheaper. 

As you hit the top tax bands, there are a lot more sections to complete and aspects to consider. Plus, you’ll want your accountant to make sure they are saving you as much money as possible, which will take extra time. 

Quality of bookkeeping

If you want to save time, money and hassle with your tax preparation, don’t turn up to your accountant’s office and empty a bag of receipts on their desk! You must keep a good record of every penny that comes into your business and leaves it. 

Consider hiring a bookkeeper if you don’t have time to do this yourself, as ultimately it will impact your tax preparation. Your accountant needs a good overview of the state of your finances, which can’t happen without diligent record-keeping. 

Additional services

Accountants offer a wide range of services from business forecasting to estate planning. You may wish to have tax preparation included as a package or add in other services as you need them. Or, some services may be added on that are essential for the proper completion of your tax preparation if applicable. All of which will affect the total cost. 

Time

Accountants don’t typically charge by the hour anymore, though the amount of time your tax preparation will take will be factored into their quote. Complex financial affairs will require more time to sort through, therefore those individuals can expect to pay more for tax preparation. 

Experience

As with any service you wish to hire, you will find professionals who are newly qualified and those who have decades of experience. Expect to pay more for seasoned professionals, versus those who have only just graduated. 

Location

Accountants will charge different rates depending on where they are based. This is due to the difference in living and operational costs.

The cheapest location across the board is the North East, averaging at £150. This increases to £250 in London.

Average cost of Tax Preparation in the UK
LocationAverage accountant cost
Midlands£200
London£250
North East£150
North West£175
South West£225

It’s also possible to hire accountants remotely, which means you can select the best professional for your tax preparation, regardless of your location. 

Though it’s worth keeping in mind that the true cost will depend on not just where you are based, but the complexity of your accounts.

Is it worth getting Tax Preparation?

Regardless of the size of your income, it can safely be agreed that tax is stressful across the board. If you’re not an expert, then you may under-report how much you’ve earned or miss potential savings - all without even realising it! Therefore, it’s always worth getting an accountant to do your tax preparation for you. As experts in all things tax, they can point you in the right direction and make the whole process as seamless as possible. 

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