I was so blessed as a teen. I was part of a wonderful program my high school offered for underprivileged kids to work, and learn life skills in the summer, and even through out the school year. That first year in the program they gathered us together and helped us how to file our own taxes. The next year I took accounting and learned so much more. I have been filing my own taxes since and I am grateful that I can do it on my own time. No lines, appointments, or extra stress. In fact our taxes are already done and ready to file as soon as my husbands last W2 arrives. A pretty big deal for someone self employed. Here are some great tips for filing your own taxes.
Ten tips for filing your taxes on your own.
1. Gather everything before you sit down. There are many things you will need when you file your taxes and having them ready to go makes it so much easier. Gather social security cards, banking account and routing numbers, W2 forms, forms sent to you by your employer, health insurance, and any financial institutions you work with. Don’t forget to gather forms from donations you made throughout the year.
2. Set up a space you can work uninterrupted. Sometimes filling out taxes can be stressful. That stress is only made worse but running children, demanding pets, and chatty spouses… Shhhh I did not tell you that. Grab a snack and something to drink that wont spill into your work will help you relax.
3. Report all of your income. It can be tempting to file taxes while waiting for a small form to arrive. Don’t give in to temptation. Not reporting can get you into trouble and filing an amendment after the form arrives is more work than you want to do.
4. Don’t forget to take advantage of your available deductions. Skipping over deductions could cost you thousands and you will be beating yourself up when you discover the mistake.
5. Don’t wait until the last minute. Stuff happens and if you procrastinate you could find yourself facing penalties from being late. If you wait until the deadline on April 18th you could find yourself facing something that stops you from getting it done.
6. Double check everything. One year I made the mistake of hitting one number off on my husbands birthday and the government denied our return and we had to refile by mail. Oops
7. Do not forget your State and Even City Tax Returns. Often these can go overlooked as everyone focuses on the Federal Tax Return.
8. Use a program like E-file.com to make filing your takes quick and easy. E-file.com offers you a free federal version. This is a great way to take the confusion out of filing your taxes. Simply pick the right version for you, answer simple questions, input your information and click file. In less time than you will spend sitting in line at the tax prep place your can file from the comfort of your home with E-file.com. Does the free federal version of E-file.com not cover your needs? Click here for a 30% off coupon for this great Tax Tool.
I received compensation for this post. All opinions are my own and I feel the E-file product is a great option for easily filing your taxes.