How Much Do Bookkeepers Charge Per Hour? (The Range $-$$$)

Many small businesses and nonprofits need bookkeepers, but really wonder if they can fit them into their budget. All businesses should be budgeting a bookkeeper in their budget from the start unless the founder can do the bookkeeping.

bookkeepers hourly rate

How Much do Bookkeepers Charge per Hour?

The hourly rate for bookkeepers is all over the place. It starts around $20 an hour and goes all the way up to the $80 range.

An independent, or freelance bookkeeper is generally going to be cheaper than going through a firm, which will charge a higher rate due to all their overhead costs. The cheaper bookkeepers are usually just getting their start or cannot take on complex bookkeeping.

The more expensive bookkeepers can tackle more complex problems, but if your books are complex then your hours are going to be higher as well.

Hourly rates aren’t always the best setup for a client and provider relationship. Often there is a better fee structure when engaging bookkeepers. Let’s take a look!

Read More:

Does a Business Need an Accountant? It Depends on 3 Things

How Much do Bookkeepers Charge Per Month? (Bookkeeping Cost Per Month Revealed)

bookkeeper calculating reports

 Setting a flat monthly rate for bookkeepers can be more cost-effective than having an hourly rate charged. Many bookkeepers and clients prefer to go this route. On the bookkeeper side, a monthly fee provides predictable income.

On the business owners’ side, they will have a predictable fee for each month and no their bookkeeping will be covered.

Bookkeeping minimums often start around $250 a month and go up from there. Complex bookkeeping can be well over $1000 a month. From a business owner’s perspective, they need to consider what it would cost to actually hire a bookkeeper and in-house first outsourcing to work.

Even at $1000 a month, the bookkeeping expense is cheaper than having to bring on a full-time or part-time employee and pay them benefits.

Hourly vs Monthly: Which is Better?

For most businesses, getting into a monthly contract is better than hiring an hourly bookkeeper. When we say, hourly, we really mean an internal or external bookkeeper. 

At a flat monthly rate, you can avoid overruns and better, predict your bookkeeping expense. Imagine your flat fee generally includes 10 hours of bookkeeping a month.

You’ll be able to email or call your bookkeeper, ask questions about your books and not have to worry about racking up the hourly fee fees.

More Thoughts on Bookkeepers Rates

bookkeeping services notebook

When it really comes down to determining a bookkeeper’s rate, the industry plays a heavy part. A simple lawn care, plumbing, service, or hair shop will be easier and cheaper than doing bookkeeping for a high-volume, e-commerce store or inventory-heavy retail chain.

It’s important to take this into account and not just think every bookkeeper’s monthly rate is from $250 to $500.

The best way to know how much bookkeeping would cost for your business is to get multiple quotes before even starting your first year of business. You should be doing this as part of your business plan.

One important piece of getting quotes for bookkeeper’s rates is having a good idea of how many transactions the business will have and bank accounts. There is quite a bit of information that bookkeepers need to know to provide a quote.

Rates are influenced by businesses with

  • Heavy transaction volume
  • Complex business structures
  • Many bank accounts
  • Cutting lots of manual checks for payments

Once you have provided all this information to the potential bookkeeper, make sure to ask how many hours they would anticipate per month that they need to spend on your books.

Also, ask if they anticipate more hours around a year-end close and which reports are included in a monthly flat rate service. This should give you a better idea if it will be more effective to hire an hourly bookkeeper or one on a monthly retainer.

Read More:

Learn Accounting for Small Business: Accounting Made Simple

Final Thoughts on How Much Bookkeepers Charge Per Hour

The hourly rate that bookkeepers charge varies between 20 and $80 on average. They are certainly some bookkeepers that charge of that but then you get into the realm of hiring an accountant.

Hiring by the hour is not always the best practice though and it is worth getting a monthly flat fee quote. Whichever bookkeeping fee structure you decide to go with, get quotes from multiple bookkeepers in your business planning process and it will help you going forward!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Shopping Cart