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How to Set up a Lucrative Mobile Office Income Tax Preparation Service

written by: Sylvia Cochran•edited by: John Garger•updated: 6/27/2011

Competing with established income tax preparation services takes more than buying a laptop for mobile tax prep. Becoming a tax preparer in this niche relies on a few essential tips and tricks anyone can follow today.

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    Becoming a Tax Preparer

    Aspiring income tax preparation services providers undergo rigorous training between August and December. It readies these professionals to begin offering tax services in-house, if getting hired as a tax preparer by well known corporations in search of new and qualified talent during tax season.

    The training also prepares them for going it alone as mobile tax preparation service entrepreneurs. The chances are good for making this unconventional home office business quite lucrative: tax preparation for business clients in need of complying with federal and state tax rules is a year-round venture.

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    Challenges of the Mobile Tax Office

    Tax prep is a perfect entrepreneurial opportunity for the conventional home office. It offers flexible hours, there is plenty of tax software that allows for the preparation of even the most intricate income tax returns and then there is the relative lack of outright expenses associated with becoming a tax preparer.

    Learning how to set up a tax preparing business with a mobile home office is a bit trickier. Even as there is still the same basic setup, the professional now has to decide on the best laptop for the tax prep business, the security of the data while in transit and also advanced data backup solutions in case of physical damage that might happen to the unit. There are also some other challenges associated with the tax services home office setup on the go.

    If clients are leery of a tax preparer in front of whose office there are tricycles and swing sets, they can be positively distrustful when it comes to seeing her/him pull up in an old car with a worn laptop. While loud noises of a household could dissuade customers from entrusting their sensitive materials to a mom or dad who appears to squeeze a tax services business into a household, clients may now worry about the lack of a physical office and access to the mobile tax preparer.

    A truly lucrative tax preparation business on the go relies heavily on first appearances. When taking the home office on the road, the car becomes part of the actual office setup. Just like an in-home office must exude professionalism, the vehicle now must convey the seriousness of the entrepreneur. The same holds true for the computer equipment. A mobile tax office requires a late model laptop that features ample security software and connectivity options for easy client access.

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    Making the Mobile Tax Preparation Home Office Work

    Tax specialists must capitalize on the mobile income tax preparation services aspect by offering and highlighting after hours tax prep. They may offer lunchtime, office and in-home appointments to new and established clients. It is easy to use tax software installed on a laptop, and then visit a client’s homes and do the tax preparation right there. The Bright Hub article entitled “91 Tips for Calculating with Microsoft Excel" illustrates how easy it is to make good use of the software that is already on a laptop to aid the tax preparer in a mobile tax services endeavor.

    Mobile tax services are in huge demand and not something that established tax businesses usually offer. Best of all, this leaves a second home office as a place for billing and networking, not actual tax preparation. A variation of this idea is the pick up and delivery service of tax forms the specialist might offer. Visit a client’s home, pick up all receipts and assorted income tax documents, and then come back to deliver the finished tax returns.

    By redefining the use of the home office as a tax services base of operations rather than the actual place where tax preparation takes place, mobile tax preparers have found a surefire means of offering services big businesses cannot offer, while at the same time eliminating the hesitation some income tax clients may have against the home office setup for income tax preparation services.