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What's in YOUR guidelines?

“Please send me a copy of your current guidelines for tax return analysis.”

<long pause>

That is the typical response when, preparing for an onsite training on tax return analysis, I ask for written guidelines.

Written Guidelines are rare…
I started asking my ‘students’ in class, how many of your companies have clear, written guidelines for tax return analysis? The answer is slim to none.

So I created this cool and nifty questionnaire for lenders to use before they come to class to find out their guidelines. In many cases, they sit down with their manager or a senior lender to find out. That helps the senior lender discover the guidelines that have not been clearly communicated…or even firmly decided!

Use my questionnaire to get yours in writing…
Anyone can have it. It is one of the two downloadable handouts in my Lenders Online Library tutorial on Green Bricks, 6 Ns and a Map. The tutorial is open to anyone and lays the foundation for tax return analysis.

One of the lenders in my class last week, a business development type, found the analysis of tax returns a bit daunting. He was doing fine, but it was a stretch. Day II he told me he had watched the Green Blocks tutorial that evening…again…and it really helped.

Tell me what you think…
Give it a look and then come back here and comment…What do you think?

About the Author
Linda Keith CPA is an expert in credit risk readiness and credit analysis. She trains banks and credit unions throughout the United States, both in-house and in open-enrollment sessions, on Tax Return and Financial Statement Analysis. She is in the trenches with lenders, analysts and underwriters helping them say "yes" to good loans. Creator of the Tax Return Analysis Virtual Classroom at, she speaks at banking associations on risk management, lending and director finance topics.