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Cheap tax agents and tax accountants

Find a tax agent or tax accountant with low fees to help you get more back on your tax return.

A professional tax agent or tax accountant can help you lodge your tax return properly, claim all the tax deductions you're eligible for and help you get a bigger tax return. They can also help and provide advice for managing your taxes throughout the year. Plus, the tax agent's fee is completely tax deductible.

What is a tax accountant?

Accountants are professionals that specialise in expenses, financial audits, and other finance-related information. They may operate independently, providing advice to individuals, or they may operate within a business, performing bookkeeping duties. Accountants can act as tax agents (and then be referred to as tax accountants), but in order to do so they must be registered with the Tax Practitioners Board.

What is a tax agent?

A tax agent is a specialist you can use to prepare and lodge your tax return. They can represent their client when dealing with the Australian Tax Office (ATO). Tax agents can assist you to get the most money back from your tax return. They must be registered with the overseeing organisation for tax professionals, the Tax Practitioners Board (TPB), to charge a fee for their service (although this fee is tax deductible). Every tax agent accredited by the TPB meets the Board’s qualification and experience requirements.

Finder survey: How do Australians file their taxes?

ResponseMaleFemale
I do it myself45.68%41.72%
I use an accountant34.77%35%
I don't file taxes12.03%15.52%
I use a specialist service (eg. HR Block)4.89%4.31%
A family member or friend does it on my behalf2.44%3.28%
Other0.19%0.17%
Source: Finder survey by Pure Profile of 1113 Australians, December 2023

Tax agent fees

The fees charged will vary between different accountants and also will depend on the type of tax return you're lodging. A basic, individual tax return can be as cheap as $80 or $100, while a business tax return will usually be a bit higher around $150-$300 or more.

When choosing a tax agent, make sure you check if their fees includes unlimited deductions of if there are extra fees to claim extra deductions. Some might charge extra for certain types of complex transactions, like investment property deductions.

Key benefits of using a tax agent

  • Takes the stress out of competing your tax return.
  • Saves you time, as they lodge your return for you on your behalf. Completing the form yourself can take hours.
  • Can help get you more tax back by claiming more deductions.
  • You can claim the cost of a tax agent as a deduction the following year.
  • You can wait until into the new year to lodge your return if you use a tax agent. If you do your own tax, your return must be submitted to the ATO before the 31st of October.
  • A tax agent can also provide personal advice in areas of taxation law.
  • Many tax accountants can help lodge your tax return online, without needing to go into their office.

Any cons of using a tax agent?

  • There is a fee for their service (this is tax deductible, but you'll still need to pay upfront)
  • They will not provide general financial advice that isn't to do with tax

How do I find a cheap tax agent or accountant that best meets my needs?

Finding a good tax agent is similar to finding a good quality service of another variety. Seek out several quotes from different sources and consider the following features:

  • Fees. How much do they charge to complete a basic tax return? Do they charge extra for deductions?
  • Types of returns. Can they perform more complex tax returns, such as those required by SMSFs, small businesses, sole traders and people with various income streams (if this is what you need)?
  • Credentials. Make sure they are registered with the Tax Practitioners Board
  • Qualifications. Check they have a relevant university degree such as accounting, commerce or law and how long they have been operating.
  • Speed. How long will it take them to complete your tax return? For basic returns, it shouldn't take any longer than one hour. But if it's only, say 10 minutes this might also bee a red flag.
  • Delivery mode. Can they help you online or over the phone, or do you need to visit their office?
  • Hours of operation. If you work standard business hours, it can be beneficial to find a tax agent open on weekends or available for online appointments.
  • Reputation. Do they have good reviews from past clients (you can read these online)? Do you have any family and friends that have had a good experience with them?
  • Do they specialise in any area? Some tax agents may specialise in tax returns for students, backpackers, seniors, immigrants and emigrants.

Tax Agents & AccountantsWhat qualifications should my tax agent have?

Tax agents must be registered with the Tax Practitioners Board (TPB) before they are able to charge for their service. Some practitioners can give advice and act as tax agents without being registered, as long as they are operating under a group that is registered by the TPB.

To be eligible as a registered tax agent, the individual must have a good record with no recent convictions, involvement in tax exploitation, ongoing bankruptcies, or imprisonment. Once registered, practitioners can bear the TPB registered symbol. You can find registered agents by visiting the Tax Practitioners Board website.


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6 Responses

    Default Gravatar
    TomDecember 8, 2017

    I have a corporation in Australia that owns one property in Sydney. The only income is the monthly rental fee from one tenant and the expenses are that of the maintenance and upkeep of the property. The property has two bank accounts. I need an accountant to do the preparation and lodgement of the company tax returns. How much annual fees am I looking at annually?

      Default Gravatar
      ArnoldDecember 8, 2017

      Hi Tom,

      Thanks for your inquiry

      The fees you’ll be paying will depend on the tax agent handling your case. It would be best to consult with a professional tag agent in order for you to get an estimate of these fees.

      Hope this information helps

      Cheers,
      Arnold

    Default Gravatar
    JongsoonAugust 31, 2016

    I had income from companies and I worked as a sole trader.
    I have logged through ATO but couldn’t process business part.
    Would you introduce a cheap tax agent?

      AvatarFinder
      ClarizzaAugust 31, 2016Finder

      Hi Jongsoon,

      Thanks for your comment.

      You’re on the right page! You can view tax agents, their services, and fees on the table on this page. Or you get in touch directly with a tax agent.

      Hope this helps.

      Clarizza

    Default Gravatar
    RolfJuly 1, 2016

    A client has consulted a tax agent in relation to penalties and interest charged for late returns.

    The agent wishes to charge the normal hourly rate plus a success fee that is a percentage of the penalties which may be remitted.

    Is a success/bonus or contingency fee allowable?

      AvatarFinder
      ClarizzaJuly 4, 2016Finder

      Hi Rolf,

      Thanks for your question.

      The agent is legally able to do this per the Taxation Administration Act which allows you to claim back any expenses incurred by managing tax. You can also claim interest charged by the ATO on late payment of taxes and penalties.

      Please note, as a comparison site, the advice we provide is of a general nature only.

      I hope this helps.

      Clarizza

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