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Hourly Wage for Accountant I Salary in the United States

by Vasiliki Greece 5 months ago in business
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How much does a CPA Cost in 2022

Certified Public Accountants (CPAs) are hired for the management of personal and business accounting needs and finances. Paying the cost of a CPA in addition to paying the taxes just feels like adding insult to injury. However, preparing tax returns is a serious business and simple mistakes can cost you thousands of dollars. Thus, handling your accounts yourself might seem like a great way of saving money but might end up costing you a lot more in the form of penalties. Some of the important questions each businessman asks before hiring an accountant are:

  • How much does a CPA cost?
  • How much do accountants make an hour?
  • How much does a CPA charge to do taxes?
  • The CPA fees is of great interest to both the professionals working in the industry wondering what they should charge for their services as well as individuals that want to hire professional accountants.

    How much does a CPA Cost?

    It is one of the most frequently asked questions that is actually determined by the primary payment method that a CPA uses. The two methods are:

  • Hourly based fee
  • Fixed fee billing
  • CPA fees are normally determined on an hourly basis but recently the trend has shifted towards fixed fee billing. Intuit (accounting software QuickBooks’ company) conducted surveys that showed that 57% of accountant’s bill by the hour as compared to the 66% three years ago. A fixed rate schedule is used by 50% of the accountants for their fees.

    An accountant’s hourly pay depends greatly on the geographical location that they work in. it varies drastically from one region to another. CPAs in areas like California or New York cost much higher than in the Southeast or Midwest.

    The rates of CPAs also depend on their expertise and level of experience. Their training and education has a lot to do with the wage they ask for. The minimum requirement for a licensed accountant is a bachelor’s degree, 120 college credit hours and a passing grade on the CPA exam. In order to keep their license current, they must also maintain continuing education credits.

    How much do Accountants make an Hour

    The national hourly rate an average CPA charges his clients is slightly under $30 ($28.65) in the US. The CPAs that hold additional certifications are able to charge a slightly higher rate than a simple accountant whose median hourly rate is $20.01.

    A CPAs fee as compared to some of the other professional accounting fees is:

    • CPA Hourly Rate: $28.65
    • Accountant (non-CPA) hourly rate: $20.01
    • Staff Accountant hourly rate: $20.23
    • Senior Accountant hourly rate: $27.54
    • Tax Accountant hourly rate: $22.90
    • Tax Manager hourly rate: $34.60

    CPAs are hired instead of standard accounts without a license even though their pays are a little higher because their education and experience provides the professionals with an insight and expertise that general accountants cannot.

    The rates of accountants and CPAs also vary within the firms depending on the overall income of their business as well as the number of employees they have. Some of the important factors in deciding the cost of a CPA are:

    • Years of experience
    • Industry they work in (tax, professionals, audit etc.)
    • Size of the company
    • Geographical location

    The rates of a CPA depend on the level of experience and the size of the firm. Smaller businesses pay their CPAs $30 to $50 an hour. If experience increases the wage also increases from $40 to $80 an hour. A CPA junior staff member costs $60 to $120 an hour. Senior staff members and supervisors ask for $100 to $200 per hour. If you become an owner, the wage becomes very hefty and increases up to $200 to $250 an hour. In major cities, and experts, the hourly rate goes up to $500. CPA owners make significantly more than non-CPA owners and the difference can range from $20 to $100 an hour.

    CPA Tax Preparation Fees

    A CPA is needed most commonly for tax preparations and their wage depends on the unique tax situation and complexity.

    The National Society of Accountants reported the following average CPA tax preparation fees from the previous year:

    • Form 1040 with state return and no itemized deductions – $188
    • Form 1040 with state return and Schedule A – $294
    • Form 1040 with state return, Schedule A, and Schedule C – $481

    The average cost for professional tax preparation ranges from $152 to $261 depending on taxes and additional forms to prepare beyond the 1040 form.


    The routine situations that CPAs encounter determine the hourly or monthly wage of accountants and how much they charge. The experience, location and size of the firm are very important factors that determine hourly or fixed rates for accountants. The wages also depend on the season. If you are hiring a CPA during tax season, the wages are bound to be higher and a CPA will cost you much more than it would in off season. Complexity and the unique situation of filing needs is another factor that affects wages. Overall, a CPAs cost can be determined by a number of factors and how essential they are to your firm.


    About the author

    Vasiliki Greece

    Remote Business Consultant, Creative Content Writer, Blogger, Vlogger, Traveler, and Philanthropist.






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