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The Practice of Therapy Podcast ( helps therapists, counselors, and other mental health clinicians start, build and grow in their private practices.  Whether you are just starting into private practice or have been in it a while, The Practice of Therapy Podcast will give you information to help you grow and succeed!

Dec 9, 2019

In this episode, Gordon and Julie Herres from GreenOak Accounting talk about taxes. Being a private practice owner comes with a unique set of financial advantages and disadvantages. Self-employment is a whole lot different than being an employee – many private practice owners are not prepared for the change. Stay tuned to hear Julie discuss why you may want an accounting firm managing your money monthly and the importance of knowing your numbers. Don’t forget to reserve your spot for the upcoming FREE webinar: Private Practice Owners: Mistakes To Avoid For A Stress-Free Tax Season. 

Meet Julie Herres

Julie Herres is the owner of GreenOak Accounting. The firm provides bookkeeping, accounting, CFO and tax services to mental health private practice owners throughout the United States. When Julie founded GreenOak Accounting she started working with a few therapists. Over time, more and more therapist referrals came in and she started noticing trends across the practices that were thriving. Based on those trends she developed success ratios as a way to quickly determine the health of a practice.

Today, GreenOak Accounting’s focus on mental health private practice is intentional and geared towards helping business owners understand the story that their numbers are telling. Julie understands what’s involved in managing and growing a practice and is uniquely positioned to be a trusted advisor to clients.


Being a business owner is one of the most significant opportunities, income-wise and tax-wise. There’s a big difference between being an employee and being a business owner. When you’re an employee, you’ll get a W-2 or 1099, a lot of the tax work is already done for you. As a business owner, there are many items you can deduct and savings opportunities out there. You need to keep track of what is going on in your business to prepare for taxes or a potential audit.

DIY Taxes

You may want to do your taxes if you just started your business, and you have minimal income. Another reason you should do your own taxes is if you are very comfortable with your numbers and know your finances like the back of your hand. For most business owners, doing your taxes may not be worth it – there are risks involved in doing your taxes incorrectly. If you have a more complex business structure, typically, you will want to outsource your taxes.

Find an Accounting Professional

Now is the perfect time to find someone you want to work with. Accountants are going to start getting very busy. You should find someone that is the right fit for you. Dave Ramsey says to find someone who has the heart of a teacher. Most therapists do not have an accounting background; there is a lot of stress that comes around finances. Find an accountant who isn’t going to make you feel like you asked the wrong question and find someone who will be patient with you. Make sure they are trustworthy and are capable of making you feel comfortable.

Monthly Accounting

Some accountants will help you with your monthly accounting. Julie says it helps them advise the business owner year-round. When you see your accountant once a year, there are a lot of missed opportunities. Monthly accounting doesn’t work for everyone – many people are happy to do the yearly tax accounting.

Money Shame

People hold back because they are embarrassed by their financial situation. Business owners might be worried that they are being compared to other people who may have more financial means than they do. When someone works with Julie, there is no judgment. Julie and her team know what habits are successful for private practice owners – she can offer different perspectives and useful information based on their experiences.

Understanding Your Numbers

You shouldn’t be making less money as a group practice owner than as a solo practice owner. You need to know where the money is coming from and where it is going. At one point, Gordon paid his therapists out of his pocket, whereas his therapists should be making enough to cover their costs and then some. The end of the year is a great time to analyze your data and find places to decrease expenses and increase profitability. Should you get rid of the insurance panels that may not be producing for you? It’s essential to be knowledgeable about your numbers.

Being transparent… Some of the resources below use affiliate links which simply means we receive a commission if you purchase using the links, at no extra cost to you. Thanks for using the links!

Julie’s Resources

Call GreenOak Accounting: (571) 208-2065

Julie’s LinkedIn

Other Resources

Private Practice Owners: Mistakes To Avoid For A Stress-Free Tax Season

Private Practice Start-Up Guide

Money Matters in Private Practice

Cool Resources

Session Note Helper

G-Suite For Therapists

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Meet Gordon Brewer, MEd, LMFT