Happy 2017! We’re firm believers in never too early, never too prepared for the 2017 tax season. And January is the prime time to start.
In addition to getting back to the gym regularly, make getting your taxes in order (and filing early!) a resolution that you’ll stick to. Here’s how to start the year off right and get your ducks in a row. If you think it’s too soon, think again. The IRS will start processing returns in less than 8 weeks!
If your financial situation is basically the same as last year’s, you’re in luck. You can probably keep a mental list of the forms you’ll fill out and be set. If you’re in this boat, make sure you think about and consider any changes this year – like the need to file an FBAR or a 1099Z. Small changes can slip under the radar. If you got a new job and are in a new tax bracket, donated property to charity, or just got married, be sure to make a list of all of the forms you’ll be submitting to IRS. It’ll make you feel like you’re making the blueprints for tax season, and relieve some stress.
We’re sure you did a great job of keeping track of your receipts and other documents – right? Whether you scanned all of your business receipts or have them scattered around your office, now is the time to gather everything, file, and organize for quick reference when the time comes to file.
Regardless of whether your financial circumstances are identical or radically different from last year, going over last year’s return can be illuminating. Review your personal data, taxable income, other gains, social security, and more. At the very least, you’ll get a refresher on your financial situation, and will be reminded of what you can carry over, and what will change.
If you expect to report around the same amounts, then you can also anticipate the amount of your refund. Now, use this as a starting point for our second piece of advice. Make sure you go over new tax laws that will apply to you. Tax laws change every year, and things can get confusing, especially when it comes to qualifiers, limits, and exceptions.
Because of the fact above, you may want to consider staking out a professional to consult, if you don’t have one already. A tax professional can go over your financial situation, update you on the most updated information on applicable tax laws, and help you get the biggest refund possible.
Employing these tips will prep you to settle things with Uncle Sam. And they’ll remind you to start 2017 as organized as possible so next year is even easier.
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