Are you intrigued by the idea of becoming a tax preparer? Not only is it a fulfilling and lucrative career, but it’s also a job that can be done from the comfort of your own home. Plus, with the growing demand for tax preparers, there are plenty of opportunities available. The best part? You don’t need a college degree to become one. However, breaking into the field may seem daunting. That’s why we’ve put together this comprehensive guide to help you take the first steps towards becoming a tax preparer.
Step 1: Obtain the necessary education
While a formal degree is not always required, you must understand tax laws and regulations. One way to gain this knowledge is by enrolling in tax preparation courses or obtaining a certification. For example, you might consider signing up for the IRS’ Annual Filing Season Program (AFSP) or the National Tax Training School (NTTS).
If you’re interested in becoming a CTEC registered tax preparer, here’s what you need to do:
- First, you’ll need to complete a 60-hour qualifying education course from a CTEC approved provider within the past 18 months.
- Then, you’ll need to purchase a $5,000 tax preparer bond from an insurance/surety agent.
- After that, you’ll need to get a Preparer Tax Identification Number (PTIN) from the IRS and go through an Approved Lives Scan.
- Finally, you can register and pay the $33 registration fee online.
Step 2: Gain experience
Experience is key when finding a job as a tax preparer. Consider gaining experience by volunteering with organizations that offer free tax preparation services, such as the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program or the Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) program.
Step 3: Network
Networking is essential for finding job opportunities as a tax preparer. Attend industry events, join professional organizations such as the National Association of Tax Professionals (NATP), and contact local accounting firms to inquire about job openings.
Step 4: Update your resume and cover letter
Tailor your resume and cover letter highlighting your tax preparation education and experience. Make sure to include any relevant certifications or licenses you have obtained.
Step 5: Apply for jobs
Search for tax preparer job openings online, on job boards such as Indeed or LinkedIn. You can also directly contact local accounting firms or tax preparation companies to inquire about job openings.
By following these steps, you’ll be well on your way to securing a job as a tax preparer. Remember to keep learning and expanding your skills, as the tax preparation field constantly evolves. Good luck!
If you like this article and you’re looking for more jobs you can get without a college degree, check out this short video!