How advisors can take advantage of the tax season opportunity

March 18, 2019 by Alex Noonan

A financial advisor working with two retirement-aged clients.

About the author

Alex Noonan

Technical writer

Joining Advicent as a partner support specialist in 2013, Alex provided high-quality support for partners within NaviPlan and Profiles. In 2015, he took that product knowledge to the learning development team as a technical writer, creating detailed documentation for partners with a practical focus on what they need to know. Alex received a BSBA from Drake University in Marketing/Advertising Creative in 2013.

Tax season is an incredibly important and busy time for financial advisors. During this stretch, there will be a sharp increase in contact from clients wondering how their accounts have progressed and rushing to meet the April 15th deadline. Though tax season can be a high-stress time for advisors, it is also high-opportunity for a firm hoping to grow their business in the months that follow.

Taxes can tell a story

We often mention how advisors can benefit by providing holistic financial advice and positioning themselves as a client’s go-to financial life coach. Tax season is a great opportunity for advisors to do this. When working with clients on their taxes, advisors can gain additional insight to fully understand their client’s financial situation and if any changes have popped up without their knowledge.

With advisors’ time stretched thin during these weeks, tools that help automate data gathering and entry are crucial. The NaviPlan client portal and account aggregation capabilities allow advisors to quickly collect up-to-date information on a client’s financial situation. Also, in the case of acquiring new clients during the season, these tools help make the onboarding process much more efficient giving advisors more time for face-to-face interaction.

No better time to expand planning services

If you are a CPA or other advisor that offers primarily tax-related services, this is an excellent time to expand your offerings with financial planning. Clients are already in a ‘financial state of mind’ and coming to your firm with their financial statements, so transitioning to a discussion about overall financial goals and concerns can be very natural. For advisors who are just starting to offer planning, tax season helps gets prospects through the door who can be quick sales opportunities. Check out our robust training and support solutions to help get new users up and running on NaviPlan quickly.

Also, if your firm already offers planning services and is seeing an influx of new customers looking for tax services, this is an equally good opportunity to upsell your other services.

Providing detailed tax advice with NaviPlan

Advanced tax analysis and reporting

NaviPlan is built upon the most detailed tax calculation engine allowing advisors to provide accurate tax forecasts from the most basic retirement scenarios to multi-million-dollar estate situations. This provides a comprehensive look at a client’s tax situation helping you to pinpoint opportunities to improve their annual tax hit.

Quick action reports for income tax in NaviPlan offer an easy-to-understand break down of how taxes are calculated and are not limited to just one topic. When building reports, advisors can choose from a range of topics allowing their advice to be prominent.

Advanced module offerings

The various planning modules offered in NaviPlan – such as equity compensation, business planning, and estate planning – allow advisors to model asset types and scenarios to represent a client’s annual tax impact accurately. In situations with business or real estate sales, stock purchases, or estate transfers, these will directly apply to the tax calculation making analysis clear and up-to-date.

Clients with concerns about their taxes can look to these models to predict what their overall tax burden should look like, and what tax table they may be in regardless of portfolio complexity.

Alternative scenario planning

While NaviPlan’s tax calculation and reporting are powerful, they shine brightest when assessing the potential of alternative tax planning to compare different strategies.

Current planning in NaviPlan conveniently carries over to alternate planning, granting full access to all strategies upon current assets and incomes. Changing strategies while presenting side-by-side reports of the tax changes can provide extreme value to clients.

To learn more about NaviPlan and its tax capabilities, click here or contact us.