Even though there’s a number of online applications that allow you to submit your tax return online yourself, the majority of US tax payers hire a professional tax preparer to file their taxes. Why? Because although software is convenient, it isn’t perfect, and may not be suitable for everyone’s unique situation. Plus, an expert would be able to assist you in the event you are audited. Because of this more than 60% of individuals and most business owners pay an expert to do their tax preparation.
Managing your return for both businesses and personal taxes can be quite tricky. Contact an expert for Business Tax Bolingbrook, IL advice and expertise.
For 2017, taxes are due on April 17, which is coming up pretty quickly. Do you have everything you need to get started with tax prep? Here’s 10 steps to get ready:
1. Collect Income Information.
You should have received various forms from your sources of income, with the information you need to file your taxes. Make sure you have them all handy. If married filing jointly, be certain to grab your spouse’s forms, as well.
Examples of tax-related forms you may have received, if applicable, includes (but not limited to):
- W-2 from employers
- 1099s forms for income earned as an independent contractor
- Business income
- Unemployment income
- Income from rental property
- Social Security Benefits
- Income from Investments (including dividends, earned interest, and proceeds from investments)
- Miscellaneous income (including gambling winnings, jury duty income, awards, and medical savings account distributions)
- Income from prior year tax refunds
2. Gather Receipts.
If you’re not choosing the standard deduction, prepare for potential deductions, credits and income adjustments by gathering receipts for various expenses you will itemize.
Examples of expenses that can be itemized or impact income includes (but not limited to):
- Business expenses
- Job-related expenses
- Medical expenses
- Self-employed health insurance
- Education costs
- Childcare expenses
- Charitable contributions
- Moving expenses
- Student loan interest
- Medical Savings Account contributions
- IRA contributions
- Energy credits
3. Document Personal and Business Status / Information and Changes.
Your tax preparer will need to know required personal and business information in order to file your return for you, so it may be helpful to write this down in one document that can be provided to them. The required information includes:
- Name, date of birth and social security number for you, your spouse and all dependents
- Address of primary residence, vacation home, rental property
- Date moved (if applicable)
- Date property was bought and/or sold (if applicable), and amount
4. Find Last Year’s Return.
Locate a copy of last year’s tax return, and have it ready. Your new tax preparer is going to need it, unless you’re going to use the same preparer you did last year and they already have a copy on hand.
5. Request a Filing Extension (if needed).
If you will be unable to get all of this information together in time for your tax prepare to submit your tax return, it is possible to request an extension. File an extension on or before April 17, 2017, and you may have until October 16, 2017.
6. Determine Refund Method (if expecting one).
In the event that you’re getting a tax refund, you have the option of receiving it in the form of a check or direct deposit. If you want it direct deposit, you will need the routing and account number of the bank account you want the refund deposited into.
7. Choose a Tax Preparer.
Once you have all of this information ready, the next step is to choose a tax preparer and schedule an appointment to meet with them. The sooner you can meet with them, the sooner you can begin the process and promptly receive your refund (if you anticipate one). If you’re in west-suburban Chicago, Illinois looking for a tax preparer or CPA, try tax prep Bolingbrook for professional, quality service.