The holidays are almost here, and I know you are busy baking cookies (and eating them!), decorating and shopping for just the right gifts for your friends and family. If you want to do something nice for yourself, take a little time out of your holiday preparations now to making filing your taxes in a few months easy as pie. I know you don’t have a lot of time to spare, so here are three things you can do in under an hour to save at tax time.
Round up your tax documents. Don’t spend another tax time digging through papers to find the documents you need. In a few months, you’ll open your tax folder and magically, everything you need to prepare and file your tax return is there. It’s easy to make that happen. Just label a file Current Tax Info, and tuck it into your desk drawer. Then spend half an hour now going through your papers and dropping everything that’s tax-deductible into the file. It will be a breeze to organize that file once you’ve got everything you need all in one place.
Find tax deductions in your closet. Go through your closet with a big garbage bag, and toss in things your children have outgrown and clothing you never wear because they are outdated or no longer fit. Then dump out the bag onto your bed, make a list of everything in the pile. Add the sporting equipment, toys and books that are gathering dust in the closet, then bundle it all up and take the bag to your local charity collection point. You can use ItsDeductible from Turbotax to accurately value and track your donated goods. That way someone else will enjoy them and you’ll get a big tax deduction for 2017.
Start your tax return early. With the average tax refund at about $3,052 last season, you’ll want to file your taxes early. When your W-2 form arrives, you’ll be anxious to file your tax return and get your tax refund. You can enter as much as you can into TurboTax beforehand, so when your W-2 arrives you can just drop those figures into the forms and e-file as soon as the IRS begins accepting e-files. TurboTax also partners with millions of employers and financial institutions so you can import your W-2 information eliminating data entry.