It's here - tax time! The best way to save you time and money is to be prepared. But how can you do that? Tax time can be frustrating as well as stressful. Some people strike out all alone and do their own taxes. A few lucky ones ask for advices and use a tax service. If you are doing your own and need a few quick tips, read on to find out how you, too, can get ‘er done!
1 Get Organized
The worst thing that you can do is to go in to your CPA with a box stuffed full of receipts and leave it at that. Invest in some manila folders and separate everything according to what it is. Fuel receipts, bills and such, office supplies, whatever. If you run a small business, type out a month-by-month list of expenses and what they are. It's a little time invested, but you and your CPA will appreciate it in the end. And, if you do this throughout the year, it's a real time saver!
2 Don't Wait
This picture is most people - they've waited until April 15th to get their taxes done and they're rushing to the post office to get it postmarked. Don't let this be you. The earlier, the better. Not only will you get your refund quicker (if entitled) but you get the worry and the hassled over that much quicker. Just think - stress free all of February and April because you done your taxes in January!
3 Make a List
Make a list of anything and everything you need for taxes. This way, you will only have to make one trip to the CPA - no returns except to pick up your stuff!
You would be amazed at the many things that you can claim on taxes! Do some research and learn all about deductions and business related expenses you can claim before it's time to file! Who knows? It may provide you with a couple extra hundred dollars to go to expenses!
5 Make Time
I know it's a pain, but we all know it has to be done. So why wait? Make time - schedule time to gets your taxes taken care of before April 15th comes. As I read somewhere, "Why put off until tomorrow what you can do today?” How true this is!
6 Double Check Everything
Everyone is prone to making mistakes - and you don't want a mistake to lead to an audit! So, double-check everything before sending it in. Make sure stated information is correct to the best of your ability. If you have a good CPA, they've already done this, but do it again just to make sure. You can never be too careful when it comes to dealing with the government!
7 Be Wary of Having a Big Mouth
Believe it or not, the IRS actually has a hotline for people to call and blow the whistle on those who have let it slip that they hoodwinked the government. So, it's best to keep your accounting strategies to yourself. However, I do not, but any means, support dishonest behavior - especially in cases like this.
Taxes are a taxing time, but we can make the process much more simple and easy with these steps! Have fun and good luck! How do you prepare for taxes?
Top Photo Credit: curious_spider
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