It is January and that only means one thing. Okay, it means quite a few things, but one of those things is this: It’s officially tax season.
I know that doesn’t sound nearly as fun as holiday season, or snowy season, or even sweater vest season (which, let’s be honest, is there ever a sweater vest season?), but tax season really doesn’t have to be as daunting as it sounds. With a few simple tips to get you started, you’ll have your taxes filed and out of your mind in no time.
Here are some helpful tips with your tax refund!
1) Gather Information. Be sure you have the correct Social Security Number and date of birth for each person you’ll claim as an exemption on your return. If each name, SSN, and date of birth do not match exactly when you file the return, BAD THINGS WILL HAPPEN… No, just kidding; but the IRS will reject your return and ask you to submit the correct information.
2) Gather documents. Before you prepare your return, it will be a lot easier if you go ahead and get your needed documents together. So what’ll you need?
- Proof of identification
- Social Security Numbers for you, your spouse, and dependents
- Birth dates for you, your spouse, and dependents
- Wages and earnings statements: Forms W-2, W-2G, 1099-R, etc.
- Interest and dividends statements from banks, brokerages, etc.
- A copy of last year’s tax return
- Bank routing and account numbers
- The amount you paid for childcare and the childcare provider’s tax identification number
- Receipts for charitable donations
3) Preparing your Return. There are a few ways to go about this. You can do it yourself or get assistance through a professional. If you do it yourself, you can use a tax software program to make it a bit easier.
- TaxAct is a free tax prep software
- TurboTax has a free option
- FreeFile is also a great option offered on the IRS website
If you choose to get assistance with your tax return, hiring a professional is an option—but it can be expensive. Luckily, there are free options out there: IRS Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) sites. These VITA sites have volunteers who are trained to help you navigate your tax return from start to finish. To find a VITA site near you, call (800) 906-9887 or click here.
Right now if you directly deposit your tax refund onto your Mango card, you could DOUBLE your tax refund. Click here to find out more!
So much for tax season being daunting, right? HAPPY TAX SEASON, EVERYONE!
What will you do with your tax refund money?
Photos Courtesy of: Seattle Municipal Archives, FeatheredTar, Go to Places Monthly,
Sources: Investopedia.com, 1040.com, TaxAct.com, TurboTax.intuit.com,