Tax season is here again and everyone is being faced with the grueling task of getting their taxes done on time. This is a task that many people dread every single year, but of course, everyone also looks forward to their return. This time of year, the question often comes up whether or not to do your own taxes. More often than ever before, people are choosing to do their own taxes this year.
There are a lot of reasons a person might to choose to file their own taxes. There are a lot of benefits to doing one’s own taxes in addition to saving money. So many simple tools like e-filing with TurboTax have allowed people to get bigger returns and avoid waiting in line for someone to help them with their tax prep. However, filing taxes alone for the first time can be a scary experience for anyone. Here are five tips to help first-timers file their own taxes.
Collect all the right forms first
Finding all the necessary forms for taxes is half the battle. People who have a lot of different forms of income or have made a lot of purchases that will count as deductions may need to take some extra time to make sure they have all the right documentation. These documents will give them all the information that they need for their taxes, making the rest of the process a breeze.
Do not leave out any deductions
Deductions are what get people the biggest returns and make doing taxes that much more rewarding. Everyone should search high and low to make sure they do not leave out any deductions. The best part about using software like TurboTax is that it will help anyone find all the deductions that they may not have thought of on their own. This can range from equipment purchased for a business to charity donations.
Assets can change a lot
In addition to normal deductions, a person’s assets can change a lot about how big their return is. Everyone should make sure that not only all of their assets are listed in their tax reports, but also that those assets have been listed correctly. Making a mistake here could mean a much smaller return or even more taxes to pay.
Have another set of eyes check it over
For people who are filing their taxes alone for the first time, it might be a good idea to have someone else look over them before submitting it. TurboTax software often will do double checks for people, but having another look by someone is beneficial to make sure everything was entered in correctly, so that a person does not make the same mistakes the next year.
Get an extension when needed
Because doing taxes alone can be a big task for the first time, it might be necessary for some people to get an extension on their due date for the first year. Extensions can be applied for to help people make sure they have done everything correctly to get the best end result.