Frequently Asked Questions
What services do you offer?
- Tax reduction planning
- Income tax preparation for businesses
- Outsourced CFO services
- Consultations with a CPA
- Individual income tax preparation
- Most other tax-related services
You can learn more about each service in our Services tab.
Can you work with clients in any state?
Yes! We are well versed in state and local tax laws and have clients in all 50 states. Though our brick-and-mortar office is located in Las Vegas, Nevada, we employ convenient and secure conference and document transfer options for clients throughout the US. We strive for the golden ratio!
Do you offer a complimentary initial consultation?
Yes. Before working with a new client, we schedule a consultation via Zoom or phone call. We find out more about your unique situation, your business, your needs, and your pain points. We also want to give you an opportunity to find out more about us.
The initial consultation is not intended to provide actionable tax advice.
How much do Ratio CPA’s services cost?
Prices are not posted online because every client is unique.
Your quote will be determined by the complexity of your taxes/finances and the value we can offer through our services.
Quotes for services are determined after an initial complimentary consultation – over Zoom or a phone call – and most clients know their entire fee upfront before deciding to work with us.
If a full, upfront quote is not possible (which might happen in more complex cases), we provide a general estimate.
We do our best to stay away from billing by the hour, in favor of upfront, transparent, project-based prices.
What is tax planning?
The strategies we can offer you and your business depend on various factors, however, in a nutshell, tax planning may involve one or more (or all) of the areas below, as applicable:
- Ensuring you are maximizing your deductions
- Tax reduction strategies related to your business
- Retirement and insurance optimization
- Legal entity optimization
- Niche strategies that apply to your particular industry
- Recent regulatory changes that apply to your particular situation
- Loopholes that might apply to you
- Advanced tax reduction strategies for your business and personal tax liability, such as green energy tax credits, insurance planning, qualified opportunity zones, research and development tax credits, carrying back net operating losses, land conservation, as 1031 exchanges, cost segregation, etc.
- Custom strategies upon your request – such as the sale or purchase of a business, college funds for children, purchase of real estate and other assets, capital gains, etc.
We are able to offer this amazing amount of value because of our focus on tax planning, our knowledge of tax law, and over 20 years of experience in the field of public certified accounting.
I already have an accountant. Can I still do tax planning with you?
Just like doctors, CPAs have various specialties and points of focus. Your current accountant might be great at QuickBooks, but not well versed in tax reduction strategies, tax law or IRS regulations.
We can augment your current tax team with our tax reduction planning expertise, backed by 20+ years of certified public accounting experience.
What is an outsourced CFO?
If your business is big enough, and you want it to grow profitably, you need a strategist who will oversee your business finances, lower unnecessary spending, offer advice, oversee accounting, and increase profitability.
An outsourced CFO gives you a competitive advantage at a fraction of what it would cost to hire an in-house, full-time CFO.
You can read more about this service in our Services tab.
What accounting software do you support?
What is the difference between bookkeeping and accounting? What is a CPA?
Ratio CPA is a tax and accounting firm and does not currently offer bookkeeping services.
Many people use the terms bookkeeper, accountant (and sometimes CPA) interchangeably, but each of these professionals provide different services.
A bookkeeper is a record keeper of your company’s transactions and financial records. They enter data from sales, expenses, everyday transactions. They enter and store this data in an accounting system, such as QuickBooks Online. They may also handle a company’s payroll, invoices, and make sure bills are being paid.
A bookkeeper does not need to be certified, and they generally do not prepare income tax returns.
An accountant analyzes data entered by the bookkeeper, verifies data, gives forecasts, makes adjustments, and prepares financial reports such as balance sheets and profit and loss statements. An accountant can advise a business owner on a higher level: how healthy is your business? How has it evolved? Where is it going?
An accountant may prepare an income tax return, and usually has a degree in accounting or finance. They may be or may not be licensed.
A CPA, or Certified Public Accountant, must have a degree in accounting or finance, and then must pass a very strenuous exam (comparable to the bar exam), in addition to various licensing requirements. A CPA is licensed and must maintain their license in good standing. A CPA can interpret tax law and represent you before the IRS. CPAs can work as business advisers, tax consultants, auditors, CFOs and in many other fields.
A CPA can sign tax returns, attest before the IRS, and is governed by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, which, among other things, dictates various ethical and professional standards.
Not all accountants are CPAs, but all CPAs are accountants.
Where are you located?
In 2021, we relocated our office from Chicago, Illinois to Las Vegas, Nevada. We work with clients in all 50 states. We can help you no matter which state you live in (within the US).
I’m not located in Las Vegas! Can I still work with you?
Of course! We work with clients in all 50 states and are well versed in state tax laws and regulations. While our Las Vegas clients can visit us at our office on Rampart Boulevard, most of the businesses we work with commute via the internet!
I have a question. Can I contact you?
What’s the story behind Ratio CPA?
Ratio CPA, LLC was established in Chicago in 2017 – and our original business name was SmartCloud CPA, LLC.
The reason for “SmartCloud”: we wanted to put an emphasis on cloud-based technology and create a truly paperless CPA firm. In fact, 98% of our clients have never sent us any physical documents!
We also wanted to create a company that would genuinely impact our clients and their finances – so we began focusing on tax reduction planning services to proactively help clients decrease their tax liability.
2020 was… quite a year.
It was also a year of major changes for our firm:
- We relocated our office from Chicago to Las Vegas.
- We expanded our firm’s range of services to cover insurance planning and wealth management.
- We joined forces with a new partner, Curtis Matlin, who is an excellent and experienced financial adviser.
It is fair to say that we had outgrown our name.
So SmartCloud became Ratio CPA.
Ratio CPA still operates under the same principles that lead us to establish our CPA firm in the first place:
- a focus on proactive, tangible tax savings,
- helping businesses grow profitably, and
- creating impactful relationships with our clients.
All aided by convenient cloud-based technology that allows us to work with clients in all 50 states.
What is some gossip about Ratio CPA’s CEO?
A fact many of our clients do not know: Eli was an NCAA competitor in track and field, and graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a full athletic scholarship. He trained at the Olympic level in long distance running.
Eli’s extensive experience in certified public accounting and his immaculate work ethic make him an ideal long-distance business partner.
I have worked with Eli and the team for two years now. I started with tax strategy and filings for one company in the first year, and now, I have given them all my businesses. Very professional and clear in communication.
Eli and Paulina are absolutely fantastic to work with. They are very quick to respond to emails and always address my questions and concerns in an organized and comprehensive manner. Their level of enthusiasm and professionalism is evident in their work, and I am definitely going to be a long-term customer. They are honest, completely online, informed regarding physician-related issues, and are always looking out for your best interest. Thanks!
Sandy Valino Doyle
I sought out a CPA online after writing a check to Uncle Sam this year following the loss of classic popular tax deductions in 2018. Eli and Paulina were amazing in introducing this already tax-savvy medical professional in helping me lay out a feasible tax reduction plan. Not only is SmartCloud CPA well-organized, tech-savvy and professional, but this company is also very kind and trustworthy. I highly recommend them for all high-income professionals! You’ll wish you met them sooner!