I also have been doing my own taxes for well over 20 years. It's a money saver if you know what you are doing. This up coming year will be a bit different due to tax changes but probably simpler for those who know how to do them.
One of my neighbors was heading out last year to drop off a folder with his taxes at a Tax Prep office when I asked why he didn't do his own. "Well, I have the condo mortgage to claim," he said as though that made a difference. I explained that I, too, have a mortgage although the interest does not even make a dent in the standard deductions for our property values. He was intrigued. "I can show you how to do your own and save that hundred or so dollars." He was even MORE intrigued. :) There...
With tax time coming around the corner I am curious to know what you have found to be the best way to do your taxes. Previously, I have done my taxes myself using an online platform such as HR Block or TaxAct. This year I got married and invested some money and I am thinking doing my taxes is going to be a little more complicated. Any recommendations for the best way to do them?
Sorry. @Moore income: turbo tax and H&R block are still good places to do taxes on your own cause they will walk you through everything online. It will generally be up to you if you want to pay to get them done and how much you are willing to pay. Credit Karma also offers free tax filing if you have an account with them. Even with the changes in your life in the past year, it won't make things too difficult in the tax aspect if you decide to do them online by yourself.
I have used H&R Block to do them myself for over a decade, after experiencing the additional fees with Turbo Tax that you mentioned, makes it accurate. Before those programs, I used a CPA for my businesses and he plugged in the numbers and charged a fee, was disappointed with what I got back and double-checked everything. They don't always ask questions as to why you did something and/or how you used it, which cost me a ton of time to redo my tam and get quite a bit back. (Ex: I bought...
That unfortunately is the case for a lot of people. I am one of the few that asks questions and wants to know what other business expenses they had that they didn't know could be deducted like bills for a shop they own, etc.
I got sucked into the cryptocurrency storm late 2017 and started trading as well through a good part of 2018 as well. I did cash out some of my investments and now I am eager to learn it's impact on my tax return. Anyone here who has been involved in cryptocurrency over the past year or so? -Sid
I have only watched from afar, but it's funny you mention the impact on your tax return as I was just doing my tax organizer online for my accountant last week. I was surprised by the question that asked if any of my investments last year were in crypto, and it was like a lightbulb moment. I hadn't even thought about having to report those investments on your taxes! For now, I'm glad I can skip that section.
I have been dreading doing my taxes this year... I started doing them on Tax Act and when I filled out the main info for my wages, it calculated a decent return for me. But I chose "married filing jointly" since I got married in July of 2018. When I added my wife's income, my return dropped to $600 owed in taxes. I didn't have health insurance last year and my wife only had it part of the year. Is this the reason it changed to taxes owed? Would you know why it would drop like that? Would it...
@Moore Income . It is usually most beneficial to file jointly. There are more credits offered. I can't tell you exactly why the amount changed so much without looking at the W-2's. My thought would be that her withholding for taxes was higher so they took less money out. Also the lack of health insurance for the entire year comes with a fee still. This is the last year people will be punished for not having insurance. Does any of this help?
@Lisa Eichinger yes thanks. I am also running into some confusion with filing the state side when trying married filing jointly. She lived and worked in both Illinois and North Dakota in 2018, I only lived and worked in ND. When I am filling it out it is asking me questions about my residency in Illinois although I technically never had residence there. How much do you charge for your services? I am getting so frustrated trying to do my taxes this year.
@Moore Income . There should be a place on the state form where it asks if you or your spouse lived in the state all year. For her you would say no then it would be a part time resident for state taxes for her. You might have to do it married filed separately, but your federal taxes back that up with the state codes on the W-2'S. I'm reasonable with my charges to do taxes. I don't have a set charge.
Hi, So this is going to be a follow up to my original post on tax reforms for 2019. As I work as a tax preparer on the side, I have been hearing a lot of people say "my friends have to pay the government this year" or "there are a lot of upset people that aren't getting their normal tax refunds, they're getting a lot less". I am not going to side with anyone on this, but I wanted to take the opportunity to enlighten the community on why there may be changes or why people have to pay, etc.
You can still write off charitable donations; however they fall under the itemized section and if your total itemized deductions are less than the standard deduction, it won't be beneficial to take the itemized deductions.
Lynn - personal businesses and the self employed didn't have much change. - You may be able to deduct up to 20% of your qualified business income from your qualified trade or business, plus 20% of your qualified REIT dividends and qualified PTP income. The deduction can be taken in addition to your standard deduction or itemized deductions.
Amronnie - - Yes, dependent children need to have a SSN for the child tax credit. If they do not have an SSN then there is a new credit for other dependents that the children would fall under. It is a credit of up to $500 per child.
Hi, I am a tax preparer and have been doing taxes for over 20 years. Here are a few changes that are going into effect this year: - Personal Exemptions have been removed - Standard deductions have been almost doubled - Tax brackets have been changed. They have gone down. - Business expenses for non self employed personnel have been eliminated. I will be happy to explain any of these for anyone who would like. Those are just a few.
I personally don't ask for a receipt. I believe with the changes in the tax law, the deduction for these items is much less relevant going forward. I did find this helpful article on Consumer Reports that you might find some answers in.
I have done my own taxes for two years now and it's been a painless process. I did, however, make the mistake last year of claiming too many allowances and ended up owing a couple hundred bucks from those larger paychecks. I also moved, and although I was able to sell everything I was looking to get rid of I was wondering about the process of donating those items to Goodwill or Salvation Army and getting a receipt to apply to my taxes instead. Is it worth it to keep those receipts hanging...
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