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Tewksbury Accountant Armed With Common Sense Wisdom, Home-Grown Values

Mar 12, 2015 03:43PM ● Published by Bill Gilman

CPA Mellinda Abbott recently opened an office in Tewksbury. Photo by KJ Gilman

Gallery: Melinda Abbott, CPA [2 Images] Click any image to expand.

When Clifford was in the first grade, he was something of an outsider. He wore bow-ties, was socially awkward and was ostracized by most of his fellow six-year-olds.
But not by Mellinda Abbott.
Young Mellinda befriended her classmate, standing up for the boy when need be. This penchant for looking out for those who needed it most is something of a family trait.
"When I was growing up, my mom was always for the underdog,"said Abbott. "I was too. I grew up with a sense of justice and fairness -- of wanting to help people."
Abbott has carried the lessons taught by her mother into her professional life. A Certified Public Accountant, Abbott has an office in Lexington and a new Tewksbury office she opened in November, at 1310 Main St. Abbott has owned the building for many years and from 2005-2013 she had leased the space to Edgardo's Hair Design.
When the owner of Edgardo's announced he was closing, Abbott saw an opportunity to expand. So, rather than look for an new tenant, she renovated the space and opened a second office.
"We have clients from all over and we definitely have some here in the Merrimack Valley," she said.
In a world of automation, Internet and storefront tax preparers, Abbott considers herself unique and something of a throwback to the days truly personal accountants.
"Technology has taken accounting, like other industries, and done a lot with it," she said. "but we don't want to see taxes and accounting completely computerized. We want it to be personal. We don't just want it to be 'send me your info and I'll do your taxes and see you next year.'"
To that end, Abbott admits she asks an abundance of questions when going over financial information with clients.
"I'm always calling myself 'The Nosy Accountant,'" she said with a laugh. "I may ask you questions and you're asking yourself "why is she asking that?' but there is a reason."
The questions she asks clients go well beyond information to get a bigger refund or to get a stronger return on an investment. They are questions designed to explore overall financial health and fiscal habits. In addition to just crunching numbers, she is able to offer sound advice that can bring long-range rewards.
"There is nothing more gratifying to me than to have a client come back next year and say, 'Hey! We bought a house!'" she said.
It's this of gratification and satisfaction Abbott was missing in the early years of her career. She worked in corporate finance and was highly successful. Still, she knew something was missing.
"I'd worked in the corporate world several years and then I just woke up one morning and decided I didn't want to do it that way anymore," she explained. "It just clicked with me that by helping people and encouraging them to make changes in their financial circumstances, I could empower them."
Today, Abbott's clients range from individuals to "mom and pop" businesses to $40 million companies. But they are all charged the same rate and they all get the same personalized care. She is committed to getting to know her clients, spending time talking with them and building relationships.
Again, Abbott gives credit for this philosophy to her hero, her mother, a woman widowed at 29 and a single mother to two children but whose outlook on life remained positive and loving.
"Growing up, my mother used to say, 'a kind word goes a long way,'" said Abbott. "She instilled in me a belief that everyone has their value, that everyone has their worth."
For more information about Mellinda Abbott and Abbott and Co., or to make an appointment for a consultation, call (978) 851-3617 or e-mail info@abbottandcompany.net.





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