1What education and/or training do you have that relates to your work?
I was a senior consultant at Washington Tax Services from 1998 to 2002 where I helped business owners and individuals who were in debt to the IRS. From 2002 to 2011 I owned two mortgage companies, but due to the recession, was unable to keep them open. Between 2011 and 2014, I re-created myself as an entrepreneur and opened Sound Bookkeepers in 2014 after realizing that my Grandmother and my Mom were both bookkeepers. I spent hundreds of hours researching and studying the needs of small business owners, and continue to keep up on the new trends. I also have connections with dozens of referral professionals and am a regular speaker at a variety of business venues in the Puget Sound region.
2Can I afford your service?
In some ways, the recession was beneficial because it made many people take a hard look at where their true value was. This was the case for me.
Despite having had a prosperous mortgage career, I was humbled when I was unable to pay my bills in late 2008. That's why our standard offering is a flat monthly fee with rates starting as low as $149/month. I am determined to have our service feel like the wind behind your business' sail and not a financial boat anchor.
Like getting a warranty on a new copier, your books have to be in clean working order before we can manage them. There is an initial setup which has a separate fee associated with it so we can get your books cleaned up, current, and in order according to the way the IRS says you have to have them kept. The best way to get a firm quote is to contact us or use the blue live chat button in the bottom right of your screen but if you would like to get an idea of your estimated up front and monthly fee, please use our automated service calculator.
3Why do you like doing this type of work?
It's a calling. Since I'm a 3rd generation bookkeeper, it's a good fit for me for many reasons. One that keeps coming up is that I have a lot of energy, and no matter how hard I work, I can never get all the bookkeeping done because it restarts every month. This is useful for me to feel like I have a place to put my energy where it won't go stale. I also feel I'm honoring my family by doing a good job in this industry. Since I'm also a programmer I'm passionate about data integrity, efficiency and organization. Bookkeeping is something that loves to be done to the zero and we have this in common.
4What types of customers have you worked with?
We have restaurants, consignment, skilled trades, technology, software, consulting, insurance, and more. Over the years, we have worked with a large variety including a wholesale warehouse, a shredding facility, a vehicle wrap company, kickboxing gym, driving school, and have had a few of our clients obtain venture capital. We also work closely with referral partners like attorneys, business brokers, accountants, loan officers, bankers, or anyone else who deals with a lot of financial paperwork related to clients.
5Describe a recent project you are fond of?
Like many clients, this client was using Excel to track everything and was losing money because she wasn't sure if she could afford to hire an employee. I helped her see that even if she had to borrow the money, which she thankfully didn't, she absolutely had to hire someone, because not enough labor was a major hindrance to her profit. That's fixed now and she is overjoyed! She said it's better than she hoped it would be.
6What experience do you have with IOLTA trust accounts?
I used to work at the Washington State Bar Association, and I have been working with attorneys for 2 decades in a number of settings. I’ve advised bookkeepers who work for attorneys on how to properly manage their trust account. I’ve represented a law firm during a WSBA trust account audit and you can read that story here
. I've also consulted with the lead auditor at the bar association to be sure we are correctly managing our clients trust accounts.
7What happens if I need to cancel my service with you?
Though I always feel a bit of a loss when a client and I no longer work together, it does happen. My Mom was a bookkeeper for 20 years and when I started my company, she told me I'd lose clients. As Moms often are, she was right. it turns out, businesses close, they outgrow us, they sell to someone who already has a bookkeeper, and sometimes after the books are set-up and they learn how to do it, owners feel they don't need monthly service until they grow some more. In all cases, if a client is moving on or closing, we are there making sure the transition goes well.
8I know how to do this, why do I need Sound Bookkeepers?
Entrepreneurs know that it is hard to be successful in business without someone being accountable for the financial health of their business. Even when someone has the knowledge, rarely is it cost effective for an owner to spend their time balancing the books. Bookkeeping is mostly about looking in the past while entrepreneurs need to be looking ahead to be successful.
The average bookkeeper is not a Chief Finance Officer, they are record keepers. We are more than bookkeepers, because we recognize that you need someone who can keep the books straight for a low price but who can also act as a limited CFO since most small businesses don't have one.