Preparing for a tax return can be a daunting prospect if you are not accustomed to how the process works. The importance of adhering to the deadlines and requirements set by the I.R.S. cannot be stressed enough, failing to ensure that your taxes are paid and in order can have huge financial and criminal implications. Those who are knowledgable in business like George Bardwil achieve success by maintaining excellent bookkeeping standards and prompt tax returns.

If you have not completed a tax return before or are confused with how to prepare, here are some tips to help you out and make sure that you have everything you need.

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Decide on Your Filing Option

 There are 3 options available to you when thinking about how to file your tax return, the options are as follows:

  • Paper Filing
  • Hire a Professional
  • Tax Preparation Software

The choice is entirely yours, many still feel that old fashioned pen and paper is best for them, with paper filing, each detail is put down with your own hand and you’ll be fully in charge of your tax return. Hiring a professional will save you a lot of hassle, especially if your bookkeeping is well ordered, it will however come at a cost. The amount of tax preparation software on the market is growing and more people are turning to the the digital method. There is plenty of online help in using the software for any problems you may have and many of them look to take advantage of as many deductions as you are entitled to.

Gather the Required Documents

 It’s important that you have all the necessary documents and details that you will need, prepare this well before you begin your tax return as if you are missing details, you will need time find them. Failing to give the correct information will cause unnecessary hassle so make sure that you’re ready, here is what you will need.

–   Social Security Number

–   Details of Spouse (Tax ID or Social Security Number)

  • Information of Dependents
  • Proof of Income or Unemployment
  • Self Employment Information
  • Rental Income
  • Retirement Income
  • Savings and Investments, Dividends
  • Other Income and Losses

Organizing Your Deductions

Deductions are the key part of your tax return, this is where you claim money back for deductible expenses. The key to organizing your deductions is good bookkeeping throughout the year, you should be keeping receipts for all expenses with notes of how much and reasons why. Many people are not sufficiently aware of the amount of cash that they could be deducting from their tax return, it is important that you know all of the areas where you can claim money back. Here are the areas where you can deduct:

  • Home Ownership
  • Charitable Donations
  • Medical Expenses
  • Health Insurance
  • Childcare Expenses
  • Educational Expenses
  • Job Expenses
  • State and Local Taxes
  • Sales Tax
  • Retirement and Savings
  • Federally Declared Disaster

Finally, the most important point is to stay calm, there is plenty of help out there for you and you can contact the I.R.S. with any concerns that you may have.