Becoming a CPA can be a great career option. It can provide a steady and reliable career choice that can resist major economic changes. A CPA can also provide a substantial income that can make the costs of achieving that career well worth the price. However, to become a CPA, a person must pass the examination process. This process comes with a variety of fees and costs that should be considered before beginning the process. These are the five most common exam-related costs to keep in mind.
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1. CPA Exam Review Courses
Before taking the exam, a review course should be taken to ensure applicants are prepared for the test. These courses can vary greatly in costs that range between $1,000 and $3,000. It is important to find a comprehensive course that will provide the proper training to ensure the successful completion of the exam. It is also important to be wary of courses that offer very low pricing or big discounts, as these may not provide the complete training needed for the CPA exam. Although sometimes expensive, there are CPA Review Programs Worth The Money and will provide a comprehensive look at all materials necessary for passing the exam.
2. CPA Exam Application Fee
Each state requires that those wishing to take the CPA exam must first submit an application. This application process helps to determine that each applicant has met the conditions and rules laid out by the state to become a CPA. This application process requires a fee for the application to be reviewed. This fee must be paid to the state board of the applicant’s state where they wish to be certified. This cost varies by each state and ranges between $50 and $200.
3. CPA Exam Fee
The CPA exam includes four sections. The applicant should determine the sections that they need to take and check with their particular state for the fees of each exam. Each exam section costs around $200 but varies by state. These payments are required to be paid through the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA).
4. CPA Exam Registration Fee
Once the examinations are paid for, those wishing to test will also have to pay a registration fee for the test. These fees also vary by state but are usually about $300 for all four tests. If planning to take multiple sections of the exam, it is a good idea to take them all within a six-month time frame. This is due to many states offering discounts on the exam registration fees for taking more than one section at a time. This could save test-takers a significant amount of money on these costs.
5. CPA Ethics Examination
Another cost that many test-takers may face is the CPA Ethics Exam Fee. This can cost between $150 and $200 but is not required by every state. This test is offered by the Association of International Certified Professional Accountants (AICPA). Future CPAs can find out if their state requires this ethics examination from their specific Boards of Accountancy.
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Once a person has completed their examination process, there are still a few fees to consider before they are complete. To maintain the ability to practice in a particular state, a CPA must pay a yearly licensing fee that can vary greatly by state. This can range between $50 and $500 every year. There are also costs for continuing education to stay current on the process and maintain competency. These fees may seem high, but they are an investment in a person’s future and are well worth the cost.