How to Prepare for Tax Season

Tax season does not have to be stressful. If you plan ahead, you can complete all the necessary tasks to file your tasks and receive any refunds with time to spare. Here are some tips on how to get ready to file your taxes and receive any refunds earlier.


Use a Checklist


Most tax preparers can offer you a checklist of items which you should prepare before seeing your preparer or accountant. Creating a timeline for completion with reminders can help you have everything you need to complete your taxes on time with applicable deductions. Some preparers have multiple types of checklists aimed at companies of different size, industry, and personal tax preparation.


Make Your Appointment Early


Many accountants and tax preparers fill up their appointment slots weeks before taxes are due. Making an appointment with a preparer as early as possible can ensure you are able to meet your tax deadline. When you call to make your appointment, you can also request the preparation checklist be sent to you by email. Bringing all the items listed on the checklist can make the preparation process much faster and ensure you receive as the deductions for which you qualify.


Plan to File Early


If you have made an early appointment in the tax season with your preparer, then you should be ready to file your taxes before the deadline. Some preparers can file your taxes during your appointment. Most direct deposit refunds are given on a schedule, but if you applied for a refund check, you may receive the check more quickly if you have filed early.


Examine Possible Deductions


Most individuals and companies can benefit from numerous deductions which stem from basic operating expenses or charitable giving. Operating expenses that may be eligible for deductions can include using a home office, office supplies, and furniture. Just like with personal taxes, company charitable giving is another effort that may be deducted. Travel expenses may also be able to be deducted from the next year’s taxes.


Explore Tax Incentives


There are many tax incentives which may reduce your taxes for the next year. One of the most cost-effective may be in reducing energy costs, purchasing alternative energy equipment, and using hybrid company vehicles. Some other incentives could include renovations for disability access, reimbursement for research and development, or hiring individuals from certain groups such as veterans.


You may find surprising deductions as you prepare to file your taxes. Taking small steps and taking them early may be the key to a low-stress tax season.


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