Howard, LLP

One size does not fit all businesses

In today’s business environment, there’s no such thing as one-size-fits-all financial solutions. Industry realities, regulations, compliance and legal issues are too specialized. Howard’s professionals pride themselves on knowing the intricacies of specific industries and helping you tackle your unique challenges. Among our specialties are:

Manufacturing

The pursuit of improved innovation never ends. And measuring the cost of improved innovation against potential benefit of implementation continues to be a challenge. In this business environment, there’s simply no room for bad or unqualified tax and financial advice.

This is why so many manufacturing businesses rely on Howard. We provide tax and assurance solutions to manufacturers in technology, textiles, plastics, metals, semiconductors and other fields. Our services also include entity-level and accounting method consulting.

Spending the time to listen to you and understand your business — and putting our experience with the IRS and other manufacturers to work for you — we can identify manufacturing-specific:

  • Tax incentives that can make your activities more profitable, delivering a competitive advantage in the overall pricing strategies and business model
  • Tax provision traps that can be avoided to reduce the risk of unplanned assessments and adverse profitability implications

Retail & Wholesale

Retail and wholesale businesses see it every day. Competition is increasing, and margins are shrinking. To boost business and stay competitive, some companies have expanded their advertising, or begun offering discounts, promotions and/or delivery service. Others are consolidating product offerings to simplify their marketing.

For businesses like yours, Howard is helping identify excess operational costs, and providing an accurate financial picture, so you can make plans to improve your business. We tailor our services to meet your company’s specific needs.

Among the ways we can help you overcome your challenges are:

  • Advising you on the best tax strategies for your business
  • Recommending and providing assistance with inventory tracking software
  • Helping develop a compensation plan to retain a high-quality sales force
  • Assisting in money management and bookkeeping
  • Providing recommendations on third-party resources for areas outside of our scope (e.g., attorneys, marketing, banking, etc.)

Real Estate & Construction

The real estate and construction markets may be on the rebound. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t plenty of challenges to tackle. Financing is still difficult to come by. Market prices continue to fluctuate. And regulations have become more stringent.

With deep experience in both residential and commercial real estate and construction, Howard has worked through a wide variety of issues for clients over the years. We can develop and implement strategies that have worked well in the past (and, with hindsight as our guide, improve on those strategies as well). We’ll work with you to make sure your business is structured for ease of operations.

Well versed in how taxes affect your industry and how financial reporting affects financial institution decisions, we listen and understand your priorities, and use those insights to provide counsel and support, such as:

  • Helping you keep holding costs low
  • Assisting you with divestiture
  • Structuring operations in the correct entity to minimize taxes, as well as planning around Texas margin taxes
  • Preparing projections that account for multiple factors
  • Providing financial reporting options available
  • Performing tax planning to mitigate recapture components of real estate transactions
  • Providing tax strategies to fulfill long-term objectives and facilitate the business’s future growth and success
  • Taking advantage of lower capital gains rates and Section 1031″like kind” exchanges
  • Maximizing the depreciation deduction

Professional Services

During the economic downturn, professional services firms saw a significant decrease in revenues. Many companies put expansion plans on hold, refocusing on simply keeping their businesses in the black.

With the recovery under way, many firms are now beginning to see revenue increases. Their current clients are expanding project scopes. And new clients are being brought on board, some with significant, multiphase projects.

The evolving business environment brings fresh challenges for professional services firms. Howard can help with many of them. Listening and understanding your priorities, needs and concerns, we use the resulting insight to help you in multiple ways. Among them:

  • Maintaining the proper skill sets for current and potential clients
  • Maintaining a balance for profitability
  • Structuring your business entity for maximum tax benefits
  • Performing internal control reviews
  • Conducting “like kind” exchange tax planning
  • Conducting due diligence on potential acquisitions
  • Performing general tax planning

Restaurants

Even highly successful restaurateurs have small profit margins. Cost of goods sold is a significant component, and any expenditure that doesn’t bring value can quickly damage margins. You need to spot trends in your financials and make quick, informed budgeting and spending decisions.

Howard can help you stay on top of it all. We’re well versed in restaurants and other hospitality businesses, and we are constantly on top of the most current trends and legislation, offering cost-saving value to clients like you. Count on Howard to analyze your financials and provide quarterly or monthly reports that track income and expenses in a timely and accurate fashion.

We can also help you stay on top of the Texas margin tax — based on gross receipts/gross profit, not net income — which can affect even established companies with net operating losses. (Our thorough knowledge and application of what expenditures qualify for cost of goods sold can dramatically reduce your margin tax burden.)

Oil & Gas

It’s no secret that global energy demand has experienced unprecedented growth. New deposits are discovered each month, and new investors and landowners are entering the industry every day.  Energy prices are fertile, and the oil & gas industry is expanding.

Howard has deep experience assisting clients throughout the oil & gas industry, from the original mineral interest owner who is approached to lease his land, to operating and oilfield service companies responsible for drilling, operating and delivering product.

Count on Howard to listen to your unique situation and needs, and deliver a full complement of services, including:

  • Assisting with entity structuring required to mitigate client risk and liability
  • Providing comprehensive tax planning to minimize federal and state income taxes and the Texas margin tax
  • Handling the accounting necessary for monthly joint interest billings and revenue runs for outside mineral interest owners
  • Performing day-to-day tax and assurance services
  • Conducting planning needed to purchase or sell mineral interests in the most tax-advantageous manner

Not-For-Profit

For most not-for-profit organizations, the biggest challenge is to continue to maintain and grow contribution levels over the long term. With so many not-for-profit agencies in the North Texas area competing for the same dollars, it can be difficult to keep donors giving year after year.

At Howard, we’re well versed in not-for-profits, and adept at resolving the toughest, most complex financial and compliance regulatory issues these organizations face.

We take a holistic approach to the challenges of not-for-profit organizations. By assuming a broader perspective beyond pure finances, we’re able to “think outside the spreadsheet” and identify and remediate even nonfinancial issues. This assists not-for-profits to achieve their mission more effectively.

Medical

Perhaps no industry is in such a state of flux today as the medical profession. Costs are on the rise. A growing, aging population is taxing Medicare and Medicaid and making it more difficult for providers to get true value for their services. And the Affordable Care Act has created new tax regulations and compliance issues.

Amid all this change, medical providers must monitor their expenses, revenues and overall risk. At Howard, we help our clients manage costs and enhance their bottom lines. We work with your organization, address your concerns and ensure that you’re up to date on current tax issues that affect your operations.