What are a bookkeepers rates? This is a question that a lot of people ask. It is common for small business owners to want to know. Bookkeeping rates however, are completely dependent on the needs of the business. With that said, here are some rates that we have found in our studies.
1/2 of bookkeepers charge between $40-$60/hour
1/5 of bookkeepers charge between $32-$40/hour
1/5 of bookkeepers charge between $60-$75/hour
Hobbyist can charge as little as $15/hour with some experts charging as high as $80+/hour
Why the range of prices?
There are a couple of reasons. One of the most important factors is the quality of work. It is true that you get what you pay for and when it comes to your businesses books, you should only want the best. Hiring a hobbyist or rogue bean counter may seem like a good way to save a few dollars but in the end it could cost you much more in mishandled books.
Another factor that can dictate price is the volume of work required. If a business requires a bookkeeper for a couple days a week, then an hourly fee may be negotiated at a lower rate due to the larger commitment.
This is not to be confused with a bookkeeper who asks a lot of questions. At the beginning of any job,
How to keep costs down
When thinking about bookkeeping rates, it is important to know your business needs. A good bookkeeper will ask many questions at the start of a contract and being able to answer them is the best way to keep costs down. They need to know how your business operates. This includes its revenue streams, cost of goods sold, expenses and more. The less your bookkeeper needs to learn through research, the less time they will have to bill you for. Some other questions to ask yourself include;
- How frequently do you require help?
- How much help is needed?
- Do you want to be trained or outsource your books?
- What can you afford?
Another way to keep your costs down are to interview your bookkeeper thoroughly. Find out about their experience not only with programs, but with business operations in general. Someone who is good with the books but not so savvy with operating a business may take up more time than someone who is an ace all around. It may seem counter intuitive to hire the best (since they will cost more) but the long term savings in having a knowledgeable, efficient bookkeeper will almost always outweigh the short term savings.
Bookkeeping costs for startups
Startup can be a very confusing time for any owner, especially when it comes to answering a bookkeepers questions. How do you know what your revenues, COGS and expenses are before your business is running? Truth be told, you can’t know exactly. However a good financial forecast (which can be derived from your business plan) can help.
In the beginning, you could have your bookkeeper come in and set up bookkeeping software and teach you how to use it. Programs such as Freshbooks can be quite large and daunting. Having someone who is knowledgeable on the program can help you get started in the most efficient way possible for your unique business.