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3 Tips for a Stress Free Tax Season

“The only things certain in life are death and taxes.” ~ Benjamin Franklin

It’s the time of year you receive numerous envelopes with important tax documents. Most leave them unopened or add them to a folder to be looked at in April. Not a good idea and will leave you looking like the guy above.  Here are three tips to relieve stress this year.

  • Start Early – open the envelopes and gather your W2s, K-1s, 1099s, and 1098s. Then prepare a tally of your deductions (charitable donations, IRA contributions, out of pocket medical expenses, mortgage or home equity interest amounts, real estate tax payments, alimony payments, student loan interest, 529 college savings contributions, unreimbursed business expenses…just to name a few). If you make estimated payments, summarize those federal and state payments on a sheet of paper with the amounts and dates. We can guarantee procrastinating and opening all this up in April WILL create a stressful tax season.
  • Utilize Technology– scan everything onto a flash drive with multiple labeled folders. At Thrive we have our clients upload the pdfs to their online secure Client Vault. Having clean electronic folders will make for a smooth reporting process. Plus you’ll have everything archived for future reference.
  • Use a Professional – don’t be penny wise and pound foolish, tax reporting has become complex and the professionals do this for a living. Rely on them to accurately report your taxes and pick up on items you may have missed. An inexpensive price for peace of mind. Schedule your meeting NOW.

The tax deadline this year is midnight on Tuesday, April 18th. Why not April 15th? Well the 15th falls on a Saturday and the Washington D.C. Emancipation Holiday (celebrating the day slavery ended in D.C. in 1862) typically observed on the 16th (Sunday) is being celebrated on the 17th (Monday). But don’t use that as a reason to delay!