Never Pay For Your Professional Tax Software With
Hi, I am Mike Steele, owner of Ultimate Tax.
I am excited to announce that we are extending and expanding our free software option.
We are giving away our tax software based on your performance. If you fund 30 or more bank products per season, we are going to give you our tax software, free of charge.
Our software is used by thousands of tax preparers every year.
So, your performance earns free professional tax software. Even better you can do this EVERY year.
Offering a refund settlement solution also known as a bank product to your customers shows that, you have solutions. Your customer doesn't have to come up with money - when they get their taxes done.
Plus, you can offer your customer a tax time advance.
You get to be the hero.
Also, did you know that it is illegal to "hold" checks? Every state has laws against holding checks unless you have a loan license. (It's a payday loan.)
Be solutions based.
If your customer can't pay, have a solution for your customers.
Offering refund settlement solutions is a benefit to you and your customer.
If you need more information on how they work and would like our offer - keep on reading.
We've offered TPGs, tax-related products to our clients since 1995 and it's a big part of why we have grown. Our clients depend on their tax refund to survive in these tough economic times. And these taxpayers need stability and a tax preparer they can trust.
Here are some tips for growing your tax preparation business.
As you get ready for tax season, make sure your office is clean and your front windows are not cluttered with advertising. Sometimes less is more.
Make sure your lobby is inviting and you have a place for children to play.
Each workstation is a profit center and you want your office to be inviting and a place people want to visit. Make sure you have your workstation ready to show your clients the great products you have to offer from TPG.
Many taxpayers are aware of tax-related products and you want to show them that you offer the best available products and services.
As tax season begins and you finish preparing a client's return and their expecting a refund, offer your clients the option to pay your fees with their refund.
Tax Preparer: Great news! You're receiving a tax refund. Since you're receiving a refund, you can use that to pay for today's services so you don't have to pay anything out-of-pocket. Is that something you're interested in?
Customer: Sure. How's that going to work?
Tax Preparer: With refund transfer, all fees are taken out of your refund, including today's services and the balance is yours. So there's nothing to pay out-of-pocket.
Customer: That sounds great. How do I get my money?
Your clients trust you with their taxes and they can trust you with refund options and this is what sets you apart from your competition. Taxpayers can come back and pick up a check printed from your office or they can save time and check cashing fees by loading their refund on a Green Dot tax time edition Visa card.
Tax Preparer: The easiest option we have is issuing money on a Green Dot card. I can give it to you now and you'll receive an email when the money is loaded onto the card. You can access your money the moment it's loaded onto the card.
Customer: Okay. How soon do I get my refund?
The refund delays created by the PATH Act creates challenges for clients that need money and need it now.
Tax Preparer: Because you're qualified to receive earned income tax credit, the IRS is required to hold your refund until February 15th, due to the PATH Act Law.
Customer: I don't usually have to wait and I don't know if I can afford to wait until February 15th.
While this may be a difficult conversation for some tax professionals, if you opt into the Fast Cash Advance Program, you can offer taxpayers a solution with a free tax time advance. This may be the single most effective tool in growing your business. Taxpayers are approved upon the IRS acceptance of the return.
Tax Preparer: I can offer a free cash advance and you can receive money sometimes weeks before your refund is ready. Most of my clients are approved and the advance is issued by either check or Green Dot card.
Finally, have fun. Taxpayers want to use a tax professional they like and a tax professional who enjoys what they do. On behalf of TPG and Latino Tax Professionals Association, we hope you found this video helpful and we look forward to helping you grow your tax preparation business.
For reference, we will use the term bank product.
A bank product is a disbursement option for your client’s tax refund from federal and state agencies.
When your client is going to pay you for the fees you charge to prepare a return, the client can have your fees withheld out of their refund. The types of associated fees are transmitter fees, technology fees, service bureau fees, and bank fees.
First, start by knowing that not all products are for all people. As a tax preparer, it is your responsibility to find the products that will meet your client's needs. If you assume that your clients would not like a bank product as a solution to meet their financial needs, you might be missing out on some opportunities to serve your clients better.
There is a misconception about bank products in our industry. A bank product is not a way for a tax preparer to "scam" or treat their clients unfairly or to add "hidden fees." A bank product is a solution that you should have available in your mix of product offerings. It seems that many offices are either a non-bank product office or a bank product office. Bank products are currently available in most states, though there are a handful that do not. Many software companies will have an alternative product that is available in place of bank products in those states.
The process of offering a bank product is typically a simple one. You start with preparing your client’s return, finding out if they owe or have a refund. If your client owes on their federal tax refund, you will need to collect payment for your service up front. You cannot "hold" a postdated check from your client. The act of holding a postdated check for service or money is illegal without a license. You need to collect payment upfront via cash, check or card. If your client has a refund, you have another option for getting paid for your service. You can offer to take payment the same way, or you can offer to take your fees out of their refund.
To offer bank products, you must be preapproved for this service. The process for being approved is basic. First, you must pick your professional tax software provider. Once you have your software, you can select a bank provider. Many software companies will guide you in this process. You will select the bank you choose to work with and fill out an application. The software company will transmit your application to the selected bank. There are just six main providers of the bank product service. There are a few more, but you will want to stick with one of the main providers. They provide you with the correct compliance and current products. The bank providers can also provide your tax office with a tax time loan.
Once the bank receives your application, the bank will reach out to you via email to get you to finish your application. They do ask you about your tax business and background information. After your accepted into their program you will have to finish your account. Which includes your banking information to get your fees and complete a compliance program. The compliance program should take about 20-30 minutes to complete. It's a great way to make sure you are up to date with the new regulations, protect your office and to help protect your clients. The compliance training must be completed annually.
Once the season starts and you can file returns, the process is just a few additional steps to have the fees taken out of your customers check. Here are the basic steps:
You can provide advances for your clients too. You must first be approved to offer advances to your client as part of the enrollment process. There may be no additional fee to the client to get an advance as the fee payment is out of the tax preparer fees. There are also loan offerings that cost your client additional money. Be sure to understand the options available to your clients. Offering loans should be used as a marketing tool to get more clients. Banks will be offering clients up to $6,000 with the availability to get a loan as soon as January 2, 2019.
Tax time advances are a great way to market to both your current clients and future clients that you offer access to their refunds sooner. This gives your customer an opportunity to see what you have to offer and then choose if they want to get a loan or not
You may or may not charge an additional fee on a bank product. Many offices may charge between $0 to $40 for document preparation fees. Additionally, many software companies may offer reduced rates on your tax preparation software and or offer rebates based on how many bank products you may offer.
For a typical office that offers bank products their mix of bank products is 25%. Meaning if they do 400 returns, 100 of those are done as a bank product. This provides an expanded offering to your clients.
Again, bank products may not fit your current clients. They may, however, bring you in a new clientele that you didn't have in the past. If you are currently not offering bank products, you should at least consider offering it if you want to grow your business.
Bank providers do underwrite. Since you are offering credit to your clients, the bank will do background checks on you and your office. If you have offered bank products in the past, they will look at your volumes and funding. If you are new to the industry, then EPS bank is your best option for a first-year provider.
"Never pay for your tax software ever again" - and that's just one great advantage!
*(must meet minimum number of returns each season.)
The market is tough - there are tax preparers everywhere. This is your chance to stand out to make sure you can compete with your big franchise names in your area. Click below to get yourself enrolled today with one of our banks!
Started in 2009, EPS has processed over $20 billion in financial transactions from their headquarters in Easton, PA. They are proud to say that they have assembled the best development and support teams to bring you innovative and low-cost payment products. Recently the merged with Meta Bank and became part of the MetaTax platform.
Our program with EPS is an alternative to traditional bank products.
This year we are proud to be partnering with EPS to present a new alternative to our customers in the area of bank products. In order to utilize this new program, customers will need to purchase the UltimateTax software, either for Desktop or Online.
Preparers will be able to offer returns to their customers through a debit card, direct deposit, or check. Bank fees will vary depending on the method of disbursement chosen by the customer:
|Product||Cost to Customer||Cost to Preparer|
|FREE disbursement on a debit card||$0.00||$5.00|
|Disbursement through a direct deposit||$40.00||$0.00|
|Disbursement through a check||$40.00||$0.00|
*All other returns in your office would cost you $5.00 as a minimal processing fee, including those choosing to not utilize a bank product.
2019 EPS Advance Program
Loans $250 - $6000
Post Ack Advance Loans costs ERO $40. Loan amounts higher than 25% of expected refund cost ERO $40 and client 36% APR.
No cost and interest-bearing options for the taxpayer. Three tier programs: 25%, 50%, or 75% of the expected refund Available January 2, 2019 to qualified preparers
About Santa Barbara Tax Products Group
Founded in 1991, Santa Barbara Tax Products Group (TPG) became a Green Dot company in 2014. TPG serves consumers nationwide with tax-related financial products and services that provide value, are fairly priced and satisfy consumer need. TPG offers tax-related financial products through a network of tax preparation franchises, independent tax professionals and online tax preparation providers. TPG is located in San Diego, California.
UltimateTax has been a partner with TPG since 2006. The fees with TPG are $39.95 for the bank fee. Other fees include fees from the transmitters and service bureau. Our average fee for a refund transfer for the past few years was $86.95 per funded bank product. Additionally, based on volumes your tax office can receive rebates and free software.
2019 Fees to offer bank products through TPG
We are happy to announce that the fees are the same as 2018 filing season!
Bank Fee – $39.95
Technology/Transmitter Fee – $27.00
Service Bureau Fee - $20.00
Total Fees to Client - $86.95
2019 TPG Fast Cash Advance Program – The advances are at additional costs to preparer and client.
$500 - $6,000
ERO Fees for Fast Cash Advance are $45, the client has an additional fee of 36% APR.
PreAck advance is $79 plus 36% APR to client.
If loan goes on a Walmart Money Card the fees are reduced by $25.00
Additionally, TPG offers two great programs for EROS