San Francisco is a hotbed of startup and entrepreneurial activity in the Bay Area. With the recent Twitter IPO, it seems like everyone in San Francisco now has a great new business idea.  Many are tech-oriented but we have many great startup ideas coming from Mom & Pop businesses, in the restaurant industry, in consumer and in many, many others. If you have a Startup and are looking for a CPA firm in San Francisco that specializes in startups, contact us today. We’ll do quick free phone consult and then we can explore how we can help your Startup business in its tax and accounting issues.

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San Francisco Startup Business and CPA FirmCommon Questions Asked by San Francisco Bay Area Startups.

Here are some common questions (and some short answers).

  • What Startup Expenses are Deductible? Generally anything that is directly related to the business, including startup costs, are deductible.  If it is a “legitimate” business expense, in a nutshell, it is deductible.
  • What Startup Items can be Depreciated? In some cases you can fully deduct an item right when you purchase it, and in others, it needs to be depreciated as an expense over the lifetime of the asset. If you are not making money, in some cases, it is better to wait; in others not to wait. We can advise you on the complexities of what needs to be depreciated and in what way. In some cases (e.g., Section 179), you can depreciate the full value of assets – but, again, you should speak with a CPA to determine the best course of action.
  • What are Startup Expenses? Startups have startup expenses, of course.  Meaning things that you need to buy to startup your business.   These are things including but not limited to: cost of travel, trade shows, educational or training seminars, accounting and legal fees, consulting fees, supplies or materials to get things started. Basically the expenses of “starting up” are deductible, even if the business fails. Again, you can consult with us for making a strategic plan for how best to expense these early things.
  • What is the Best Corporate Organizational Form? Working with your legal team, we’ll need to determine if you are best incorporated as a S, or C corporation or perhaps an LLC. The choice of organizational form is incredibly important and you’ll need both a great CPA firm specializing in Startups and a great lawyer or law firm specializing in Startups.  (We know people!).
  • California-specific and San Francisco-Specific Start Up Issues. California is a high tax state, and San Francisco is a high tax city with many regulations.  Consulting with a startup specialist can help you minimize the state and local tax aspects of starting up a new business.

Have fun! Don’t forget the most basic reason to work with a CPA firm specializing in Startups: to have fun! By this, we mean you can focus on your startup as a business, and let us work with you on the accounting, tax, and bookkeeping issues. By specializing in what you know, and love, you’ll not only save hassles but you’ll have fun!

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