Organization is very important when it comes to being tax prepared. If you have been putting those receipts in a shoe-box all year, it is time to get them organized and ready for your CPA.
Teresa Bear, CPA, has some advice to make this time of year easier and more productive. She says it is a good idea to estimate your taxes using the return from the prior year. Use your W2 and check stubs to make sure you are having enough taxes withheld throughout the year.
To get your documents ready for your appointment and tax preparer Bear suggests:
- Having a place to collect the third party documents that come to you in the mail
- Go through receipts and deductions using a check sheet or an itemizer from your preparer
- Locate documentation you will need
- Don’t take your “shoebox” to the preparer
- Don’t bring every receipt – write down category totals
- Leave your tax confessions at home. The preparer cant absolve you of not paying what you owe
- Do file – a return or an extension. If filing an extension send what you estimate you will owe
Bear stresses the importance of filing and filing on time. Not filing will result in penalties on top of what is owed.