There are literally hundreds of specialist contractor accountancy service providers operating in the UK. They vary in size, what they offer, and of course – how much they charge.
The majority of accountants working within the contracting industry charge on a monthly basis for an ‘all inclusive’ service, which should cover all your fundamental accounting obligations.
Before you start looking for an accountant, there are a few things you should bear in mind to ensure that you’re comparing like with like (on the price front):
What to consider when comparing accountancy costs
1) Most contractor accountants will take care of all your company tax affairs for a single monthly fee, but this isn’t always the case, so find out what is included.
2) More and more accountants now have several packages, from a ‘basic’ to a ‘platinum’ service. Fundamentally, even the most basic of packages should take care of all your statutory obligations and will ensure that all your accounting needs are met on an annual basis. Whether or not you need any ‘extra’ services is a personal choice.
3) There may be some initial start up fees, such as the costs of setting up your limited company. Some accountants may include this if you sign up to their monthly package, whereas others will invoice separately.
4) A few accountants offer significant ‘extras’ on top of the standard tax services you’d expect to be included. These may include professional indemnity and business liability insurance, and IR35 contract reviews for each contract you work on.
And of course, price is just one of several things you should consider when choosing an accountant. Other factors, such as quality of service, reputation, and the personal rapport you develop with your account manager can be equally (if not more) important to the monthly fee you pay.
Typical Monthly Fees
As a very rough guide, based on the prices quoted on provider’s websites, the majority of accountants appear to charge between £75 and £125 per month for an all-inclusive service (i.e. not including significant extras as mentioned above). Many of the largest (1,000+ client) firms fall into the higher end of the range, and even offer more expensive packages with a number of optional ‘add ons’.
Interestingly, the average monthly cost of a contractor accountant has fallen in real terms over the past ten years. The market has become saturated in recent years, which has resulted in a downward pressure on fees.
For more information on monthly fees please contact the contractor accountants on our directory directly.