You might still be prospering from the tax refund you pocketed from filing in April, but looking towards next year now can help you reap more rewards. Go through this checklist to ensure you’re on track for a successful April 2017.
Refresh your memory and request a copy of your tax return with a transcript of your income and wages from the IRS. This will allow you to compare to make sure nothing goes missed next time around. This is also a good time to assess what route you’ll take – doing your taxes yourself or with the help of a professional – and pick one before January.
Taking a look at last year’s tax return will help you make a list of what changes occurred in 2016, namely those that could increase deductions and credits. Perhaps you purchased an electric car, moved, or made a large donation. Make a list of the financial implications of these changes, and mentally prepare to include them in next year’s return.
Plan for an Early File
Regardless of your financial situation, filing early is always best. When you get your W2s from your employer, you should be familiar with what deductions and credits you will claim already. Filing early means earlier tax refund, so stick to a timeline.
If you haven’t kept your receipts and documents organized so far, now is the time to catch up and create a solid system. Take that list you made (above) and make sure there is a document in support of each. Then, combine all of your documents into an organized filing cabinet, or better yet, scan them and store them electronically.
October is almost here – don’t let stress and confusion creep up on you when filing season comes. Taking small steps is the best route to a successful filing.