We spend a lot of time promoting the value of hiring a part time bookkeeper – how working with a professional bookkeeper can help a small business owner stay up-to-date with their financials, understand how their business is performing, and stay in compliance with CRA. But we also appreciate how business owners must balance the cost of hiring a bookkeeper and other professional service providers, so in this post we’ll discuss how much a bookkeeper would typically cost your business.
What is a Typical Part Time Bookkeeper Hourly Rate?
As is the case with many things in business, there’s a range for how much professional bookkeepers charge for their services. Their rates depend on their level of expertise and experience, the size of their business, the types of clients they work with and the area where they work.
You might find bookkeepers who will work for as low as $15 per hour, but you should be careful because you get what you pay for. Sure, $15 an hour is a low price, but they likely don’t have a lot of experience or expertise and they’re looking for customers who don’t expect a whole lot.
On the other end of the price spectrum, you’ll find bookkeeping companies that will charge as high as $100 an hour or more. Typically, these are the large accounting firms with the fancy tall glass building offices right in the middle of the downtown core. They have higher overheads to cover (someone has to pay for those fancy offices, right?) and that’s why their rates are so high.
You might also encounter an accountant promoting bookkeeping services but charging accountant rates. As we’ve discussed in several previous posts, bookkeepers and accountants provide very different services and an accountant is vastly underusing their expertise if they’re doing bookkeeping tasks. Bookkeepers have specific training aimed towards helping manage the day-to-day finances of a business whereas an accountant is much more effective from a higher strategic level and at year-end. You should be concerned if your accountant wants to work on things like reconciling your bank account or generating client invoices for you as these are typically tasks your bookkeeper will perform.
A happy medium you might expect to pay for bookkeeping services is in the $40-60 per hour rate. If your bookkeeper is charging you in this range for their services, there’s a good chance they’ve got good professional qualifications and the necessary experience to provide great value for your business.
How Much Will You Need a Part Time Bookkeeper?
Different businesses will need different amounts of help depending on how big they are, how much activity there is in the finances of their business, and the level of their in-house expertise.
Some of our clients run very small businesses – the owner is the only employee of the business and they don’t have a high volume of financial transactions. What is often the case in these types of situations is that the business owner is very busy – they’re out doing business development to win the business and then they’re doing the work to deliver what they have sold. In these cases they hire a bookkeeper to take care of the finances of their businesses. We might spend less than an hour a week helping keep their finances current so they can focus on running and growing their business.
As the business gets bigger and busier, they need support from their bookkeeper more frequently. Also, as the business gets bigger they need different types of support from their bookkeeper, including processing payroll, filing and remitting various tax returns with CRA and making sure they’re getting paid by their customers. They might need bookkeeping services for a couple of hours a week, or 6 – 8 hours a month.
Typically, we work for 3 – 5 hours a month for our customers, which are typically small and medium sized businesses. In this small amount of time we help our clients generate invoices for the products and services they sell, process invoices received from their suppliers, reconcile bank and credit cards statements, and process any payroll and source deductions.
The Bottom Line
Different bookkeepers charge different amounts for the bookkeeping services that they offer depending on a number of factors. You might find very inexpensive bookkeepers, and very expensive bookkeepers, but for a good qualified and experienced bookkeeper you should expect to pay $40-60/hour. Most small businesses require only a few hours of bookkeeping services per month, making hiring a professional bookkeeper an affordable option.
Simply Bookkeeping1 provides professional bookkeeping services for freelancers, solopreneurs and owners of unincorporated and incorporated businesses. We customize our services based on your needs – we only see some of our clients a few hours a month but others we see on a more regular basis. Our services are reasonably priced and we tightly track the amount of time we spend working for you so you only pay for the services you get.
To learn more about us, please visit our website at www.simplybookkeeping1.com or contact Michele Hyde by phone at (647) 668 – 9363 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Have Your Say
Have you contacted bookkeepers to see what they would charge for professional bookkeeping services? If so, we’d love to what types of prices you received. Also, please share this article using the social media share buttons – other people might be thinking of hiring a bookkeeper and your insights might help them.