Have you put off doing your taxes?
You are not alone!
• Make better use of your time by having a personal tax preparer
• If you owe, do not extend, it’s cheaper to file and ask for a payment plan
• Not filing is more expensive because of the penalties
• The longer you wait, the less time we’ll have to find the best solution
But stop waiting. Do it NOW!
Consider a professional if
1. You have questions and want a detailed explanation.
One of the ways in which we are different than other firms is we take the time to go over your situation with you in detail, explain why the numbers are they way they are, and propose recommendations. Many other places hand you a return, leaving you with questions.
2. You’ve had a major life change in the past year.
Marriage, divorce, having kids, adopting them, taking elderly relatives under your wing, receiving an inheritance — when life happens, new tax rules happen along with them. A tax pro can walk you through the consequences of adding or eliminating dependents and tease out some tax-saving strategies that may now be available to you.
3. You own a business, work as a contractor or are self-employed.
According to IRS data, 30% of all returns filed are business returns. There are strict rules for deductions, expenses, dealing with debts and other tax laws related to being the boss. A once-a-year check-in with a CPA may not be enough, especially for taxpayers who need to pay estimated taxes throughout the year.
4. You’re nervous about starting to itemize your return.
Every taxpayer is entitled to lower his or her taxable income by taking the “standard deduction” (which ranges from $6,300 to $12,600 for 2015). You also have the choice to itemize your deductions, which may lower your tax liability even more. Itemizing lowers the tax bill of one out of every four taxpayers. It could put hundreds of extra dollars in your pocket.
5. You’ve got investment properties.
The home you live in and your weekend pied-à-terre are indeed assets and are subject to their own set of IRS rules for deductions and credits. However, investment property (rentals, real estate used for business purposes) is a different beast in the eyes of the IRS. For example, as a landlord you can trim your tax bill by depreciating real estate costs. And when it comes time to sell, there is a way for taxpayers to postpone a painful capital gains whammy (with a “like-kind” or 1031 exchange) — but it’s an involved transaction. A skilled tax navigator can help you maneuver through it.
6. You’ve had a lot of investing transactions.
If 2015 was a particularly transaction-heavy year, a tax expert can help you navigate the details of tax-loss harvesting, correctly calculate capital gains and losses and deal with the 14 pages of instructions to fill out IRS Form 6251: Alternative Minimum Tax - Individuals. In particular, watch out if you’ve earned a fair amount of gains from foreign investments (think exchange-traded funds, mutual funds and even multinational companies) you held in a taxable account.
7. You haven’t filed your taxes in a while or think you may face some tax troubles.
It’s better to deal head-on with issues than let them linger and rack up additional penalties and ill will from the IRS. Ask any tax professionals you’re considering hiring if they have dealt with situations like yours before and if they have the qualifications and training to represent you in any audit, collections or appeals proceedings before the IRS, should it come to that.
What does it cost?
Price is based upon complexity and how much time does it take to process your return. Here are the most common cost scenarios.
- We can file an extension for $65
- Credited toward final tax prep fee
- Final cost = $0
- You have a W-2 or a couple of them
- You have no children
- You may be married
- You may be self-employed