Although tax season isn’t for a few more months, it’s never too early to start preparing for this stressful and anxiety-filled time of the year. For some people, April 15th seems to just come out of nowhere, leaving you scrambling to pull everything together, get all your paperwork done, and turn all your information in before the Tax Day. So to help you avoid that mad rush this year and feel more at ease as spring rolls along, here are three things you can do now to help you prepare for the tax season.
Wrangle Your Receipts and Other Documents
One of the hardest parts of doing your taxes, or getting your taxes done, is finding all the documents, information, and receipts you need to do all this work. It’s so easy to misplace paper or delete digital receipts that you really should have kept for tax purposes. So to reduce this headache come March or April, Josh Smith, a contributor to USA Today, recommends that you start keeping all your receipts and documents in one place. Even if you’re not sure if you’ll end up needing or using them, but starting to put all your documents in one place, you’ll be sure you know where any tax information will be if or when you need to call upon it.
Start Thinking About Your Possible Deductions
Throughout the year, you may make certain financial decisions based on how it could affect your taxes. As part of this, your deductions might come into play. So to come off in a good position once you’ve filed your taxes, Kay Bell, a contributor to Bankrate.com, recommends you start trimming down your taxable income. For many people, you can deduct certain expenses from your taxable income, including things like mortgage interest and some types of previous taxes. If you’re not sure what you can deduct from your current taxable income, you might want to start doing some research or speaking to a tax professional to see what advice he or she can give you in this area.
Get To Know Your Forms and Your Tax Preparer
If you plan to do your taxes on your own, it’s a good idea to learn as much as you can about the forms you’ll have to find information on and also the forms you’ll have to be filling out. If you don’t know what you’re doing when filing your taxes, Jared Hecht, a contributor to the Huffington Post, shares that tax season can get even more stressful for you and could get you in some trouble if you do things wrong. But for those who aren’t interested in doing their own taxes, there’s no better time to find a good tax preparer than now, when most tax professionals are going through slower times and won’t be as pressed for time as they often are at the beginning of the year with everyone else’s taxes.
To help you get through the upcoming tax season, consider using the tips mentioned above to help you start preparing now.