7 Things to Consider Before Preparing Your Taxes

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) reports that more than 80 million taxpayers use paid professionals to complete and submit their tax returns. Whether you’re one of those or you just want to do your taxes by yourself, keeping good records of them will actually save you time, effort and big bucks. Also, the sooner you start, the easier it will be.

Discover what you must take into consideration before you start preparing your taxes.

Photo by Andy Dean Photography from Shutterstock

1. Opt for a tax preparer

If you haven’t chosen a tax preparer yet, maybe the best way to find a good one is to ask your friends or several advisors (such as an attorney you know) for some referrals.

However, the person you opt for must have a Preparer Tax Identification Number (PTIN) in order to help you. If the person you contract doesn’t have a PTIN, it means that he/she isn’t authorized to prepare federal income tax returns.

You should also inquire about fees, which are likely to depend on the complexity of your return. Avoid using a firm that actually intends to take a percentage of your well-deserved refund. The Internal Revenue Service website has a lot of tips for choosing a preparer and a link to the IRS directory of preparers, which you can easily search according to their credentials and location.

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