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If you’re like most taxpayers, you always end up with with an ominous stack of “homework” around tax time.
Unfortunately, the job of pulling together the records for your tax appointment is never easy—or even fun—but the effort usually pays off when it comes to the extra tax money you save from being prepared.
When you arrive at your appointment fully prepared, you’ll have more time to:
The tax law allows a variety of methods for handling income and deductions on your return. Choices made at the time you prepare your return often affect not only the current year, but later year returns as well.
When you’re fully prepared for your appointment, you get more time to explore all avenues available for lowering your taxes.
For example, the law allows choices in transactions such as:
Ideally, preparation for your tax appointment should begin in January of the tax year with which you’re working. Right after the new year starts, set up a safe storage location—a file drawer, a cupboard, a safe, etc.
As you receive pertinent records, file them right away, before they’re forgotten or lost. By making the practice a habit, you’ll find your job a lot easier when your actual appointment date rolls around.
Other general suggestions to consider for your tax preparation appointment include:
Being prepared and making sure you have the basic details of your tax return covered will make it so your tax preparer can spend more time on what matters most—making sure you don’t pay more tax than you are required to pay.