CPAs who are scrambling to adjust to today’s hectic digital age are constantly on the lookout for opportunities to secure new sources of revenue, and many are letting one of today’s fastest-growing trends fly right under their noses without notice. Across the country, the changing ways that Americans choose to purchase and live in their homes are presenting many opportunities to accountants when it comes to expanding their purview.
Accountants looking to cash in on today’s many hosing options need to get started now if they don’t want to get left behind. The growing housing option is one of the most important trends in the financial world right now – here’s what CPAs should know about it.
Cohousing is becoming the new normal
Property prices in today’s biggest cities are far too high for many average people, and others who are simply getting older are finding that lonely rural housing simply isn’t sustainable for their way of life. Thus, the growing trend of cohousing is becoming the new normal, with the once-picturesque and privately owned suburban house complete with a white picket fence now stepping aside as cohousing communities arrive on the scene. If accountants want to secure an excellent source of new and exciting work, they should begin to study America’s growing cohousing units with interest.
The growth of cohousing developments began to become noticeable many years ago, when reports began surfacing in major media outlets that people were flocking to cohabitated communities where they owned their own living spaces but shared social ones. Instantly, clever accountants understood that a goldmine was emerging, and moved to cash in on the growing housing option that was unfolding before them. These days, CPAs are viewing cohousing communities as an essential source of revenue, but many are unfamiliar with their unique cultures and thus unable to discuss them with clients.
CPAs shouldn’t be afraid to talk about cohousing communities with their clients; as a matter of fact, accountants with elderly clients in particular may find that cohousing communities are an excellent way to broach the subject of retirement. Active senior citizens find cohousing lovely because it offers an alternative to downsizing that enables them to socialize while keeping ahold of their privacy. Thus, CPAs who are in discussions with clients about retirement or moving should consider researching local cohousing communities.
Perhaps the most important reason that accountants should do this should be obvious – it can save clients tremendous sums of money. Cohousing homes are often smaller than traditional homes, as they don’t need all the bells and whistles, and come with a myriad of opportunities to do such things as share utility and cost of living expenses. Accountants should nonetheless be very upfront with clients that the growing housing option that’s so popular because of the help of loans online is essentially scaling back your lifestyle, and includes sacrificing private belongings for more social opportunities.
The ins and outs of cohousing communities
CPAs who are interested in discussing cohousing communities will soon discover that many cohousing communities are operated by LLCs formed and owned by the residents of those communities. While a larger industry of professional companies could spring up in the future, accountants who are dealing with cohousing communities these days are likely to be working with small businesses, and should thus be prepared for a change if they’re typically dealing with larger corporations.
Accountants should also realize that they may need to soothe the personal concerns of clients financial interested in cohousing communities but otherwise uncertain of whether they should commit to joining one. Reviewing one 2011 survey that was sponsored by a pro-cohousing research network is one way to give your clients a glimpse into the everyday life in these communities, and may help you make a better pitch as a CPA that it’s a financially viable option.
Above all else, CPAs should realize that the appeal of a cohousing community is the greatest to a retiree, and should focus most of their efforts pitching these communities to older clients interested in shared living experiences. Helping aging clients find retirement options is only going to grow more important in the near-future, so expect to be hearing more about cohousing communities as time goes on. Collaborative housing measures aren’t particularly new in history but are certainly a newer phenomenon for accounting professionals who may be helping clients with their living arrangements.
Don’t be afraid to broach the subject of a cohousing community when you next meet with your clients, and consider dedicated more of your time towards researching these emerging communities as they’ll grow more commonplace sooner rather than later. The growing housing option is an excellent opportunity for CPAs looking to expand their business, and could be the perfect fit for your clients who are beginning to ask about retirement.
Cost accountant with major focus in SAP/General Fund Enterprise Business System (GFEBS). Also, main functional inspector for accounting/finance audits for internal reviews as well as the Statement of Budgetary Resources audit initiative.