Doing your own taxes is not impossible. In fact, with all the help that can be had from the myriad of software programs available, it is easy for anyone to file their own taxes. Before jumping into doing your taxes, think about the advantages and disadvantages of doing them. There is some legwork you need to do, including gathering paperwork and crunching numbers.
If these activities really do not appeal to you, you might want to invest the money in having a tax professional do your taxes for you. This can save you from costly errors if you feel unsure about the work you submit. Whichever option you are considering, consider these advantages and disadvantages before committing to doing your own taxes this season.
Your taxes may be complex or simple. If they are involved because you own a business or you have more than one type of income, you might have more trouble doing taxes correctly yourself. You will want to review any software thoroughly before choosing the option to file yourself, as an error could lead to an IRS audit.
Free Help May Not Be Adequate
While many tax programs have many free online help, it can take time to find the answers you need. You might also find that you get conflicting advice as to what to do, and that can add to your confusion.
You Might Make Mistakes
Making mistakes on taxes can happen even to the most seasoned tax professional. You can always correct any mistake you make, but it can be time consuming and stressful to do. If you owe the IRS money, you might end up paying more than you actually needed to because of a mistake. Of course, if you paid less than you actually owe, the IRS could start collection proceedings against you.
You Will Save Money
Hiring a professional tax preparer can cost hundreds of dollars. Face it, it is much less expensive doing your own taxes even if you make a minor mistake. Also, the first year you file your own taxes it will take more time, but once you get the experience filing your taxes yourself, each year will get easier and you will save money on tax preparation fees, even though these are tax deductions.
Free Filing Is Available For Some People
Is your income under $58,000 per year? If so, you qualify for free tax preparation help. Visit the IRS website to find out where you can find a low income tax professional to help you file your taxes at no charge.
Link to approved vendors – http://www.irs.gov/uac/Free-File:-Do-Your-Federal-Taxes-for-Free
Many Filing Options
When you have decided to file your own taxes, remember that there are so many ways to pay taxes now, there is certain to be a method that works for you. You might be the type to want to use the paper method, or you may be confident with software and want to file your taxes online because you have that confidence that allows you to enter all information needed quickly and accurately. If you are earning under $58,000.00, remember that you qualify for free professional help.
You Do The Work Anyway
It can take longer to file taxes when you do them yourself, especially for the first year. But, do not forget that even when you work with an accountant, you have to supply all the paperwork, pay stubs, 1099 forms and receipts. This can be time consuming as it is, but if you have to pay someone to file for you, you might reconsider knowing how much work you have to do anyway.
Find out what credits or deductions you are likely to be eligible for before you decide to file your own taxes. If you can figure these out easily, you are more likely to be able to file on your own, with confidence and with accuracy. You will save money and take control of your own finances doing taxes yourself.