1040 Tax Service brings clients back year after year

Marla Larson VanKuren’s tax preparation business recently merged services with City Fiduciary Group

Marla Larson VanKuren and husband Fred VanKuren
Courtesy of Marla Larson VanKuren

1040 Tax Service has roots that date back to 1979 when Rod Larson Sr. founded the company.

Rod decided to move his small tax practice out of his home office and into a small office in Vancouver and it was there that it began to grow significantly. The goal was for his wife Marla Larson VanKuren to be the front office person for a time, then attend classes on tax preparation so she could help answer questions and process returns. But, she soon learned that she loved working with clients and she wanted to take her skills to the next level, so she became a partner in the business and began more training. She and Rod both secured their Series 7 license, which enabled them to educate clients on investing for their futures.

“It didn’t take me long to understand that I wanted a more intimate relationship with our clients and that would only evolve if I was preparing their returns and meeting with them,” Marla said. “I remember falling in love with my clients and many of those clients I still see today, and now their children are adults that come in every year. Now I am seeing third-generation clients.”

Everything changed the summer of 1998 when Rod had a massive heart attack while on vacation. The loss of Rod was a wake-up call for Marla and she was now the sole decision maker for the company. She started running the company and her son Mark decided to go to tax school so he could help, too. In 2001, Marla married Fred VanKuren and together they continued to grow 1040 Tax Service.

Today, Marla and her team continue to see returning clients and in January, her team merged services with City Fiduciary Group. Marla said this merge is a great fit.

“Our clients have been concerned, ever since I let my hair go white, when would I retire,” she said. “They were fearful of what they would do and where they would go. This has been a big concern to me through the years, too. I truly care about each of my clients and didn’t want them to be forced to the big-box tax prep firms.”

“Understanding all our concerns, a longtime friend and our financial adviser, Scott Lowe of City Fiduciary Group in Vancouver, mentioned that we should talk about partnering up, so that when I do retire it could be a smooth transition for all parties,” Marla continued. “They have all the security in place to protect our clients. The more I thought about it, the more obvious the win-win this new relationship would be for everyone. I look forward to a long-term relationship with City Fiduciary Group.”

Marla said she understands that the recent tax law from the Trump Administration has many people confused as to how it will impact them and their finances.

“Washington, D.C., never hurts our business, but the new rules make it impossible for the ordinary person to stay current and understand what they need to do,” Marla said. “The IRS is intimidating to everyone, so they reach out to professionals.”

Marla said she prides herself in the fact that she stays on top of continuing education and training, so she can stay current on the changing tax laws and ultimately better serve each client. She and her team at 1040 Tax Service love working with clients of all kinds.

“I look forward every year to see our clients and hear about the changes in their family while catching up on the past year they have experienced,” she said. “And during that conversation, I am always paying attention to things that could impact their tax return.”

Learn more about 1040 Tax Service at https://www.cityfg.com/tax-preparation-services.