Due to COVID-19, the IRS has extended the tax deadline to July 15th.
For most, this was a blessing, giving them a chance to get their finances in order. For others, the whirlwind of spring 2020 still has them lagging behind on their IRS obligations. However, that’s why we’ve decided to put together a brief guide on what to do if you’re not prepared for the upcoming deadline.
Decide if you need an extension.
For most full-time workers, a simple 1040 isn’t too bad for an accountant to knock out. However, if you find yourself in positions like being self-employed, owning a business, or having a complicated investment portfolio, the extra itemizing might mean it’d be smart to file for an extension. Take a glance at your previous years’ taxes and consider what that process was like, as well as what may have changed.
Consider a real accountant over automated software.
Unless your taxes are stupid-simple, then using software like TurboTax may not understand the nuisances of your particular form of employment, as well as how to maximize your return. Additionally, these companies spend a lot of money to not only lobby a complicated tax code (that way, you have to buy their ‘upgrades’ for an extra $50 to ‘save $120’) but purposely design their software to lead you to upsells. As taxes are complicated enough, having a person there you can rely on is trust can save a lot of time, money, and headaches.
Shop around for different prices.
Depending on how complicated your tax situation is, there could be some accountancies that are better than others for the value you’re trying to capture. For example, if your main focus was on real estate or investments, some accountants are going to give you a better knowledge base than others for the price. Although the name of the game is maximizing your return, having a solid expert there to do that for the long-haul starts with knowing where to buy-in right now.
As taxes are complicated enough, having a person there you can rely on is trust can save a lot of time, money, and headaches.
Make a decision after some sleep.
Although you’re in a rush, it’s important to keep a patient mind.
Accounting is an industry where some people will try and do the absolute little amount of work, but charge you an arm and a leg to do it. Trust your gut on how someone comes off, as well as if they have your best interests in mind. If you can, tap into your network for a recommendation, or start reading a little bit on the company’s website or blog. As your taxes are only done once per year, they’ve got to be done right, which all starts with shopping for the person you trust with that sizable responsibility.
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