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Tax time is over ... Or is it?

posted Apr 10, 2014, 12:14 PM by penguin Heilman   [ updated Apr 10, 2014, 12:15 PM ]

Those who filed extensions may still be feeling the crunch of tax time. Try to get ahead of the game next year so you don’t have to extend your worry! Here’s a few tips for those people who file extensions year after year because they never have things ready.

* Organize things as you go. This could be a filing system with separate folders, hiring a bookkeeper, or something as simple and crude as different shoe boxes labeled for different types of  receipts, bills, and invoices. Any kind of organization is better than none. This eliminates the scramble to find everything at the end of the year.

* Mark what’s paid, when and how (Check, cash, CC etc.). Take down any information regarding each item directly on the bill, receipt, or paper. This can be important come tax time and make things go much smoother. This way, if you get something in the wrong year, or month, the dates are posted directly on the item and you know the who what when where and why of it all. If writing it directly on is not possible, staple or paperclip a separate paper to it with the information. It’s easy to forget over the course of the year information that could help you get a tax break that you receive in the beginning of the year.

* When in doubt, call us and ask. Jo’s Tax Service is open year round. We handle bookkeeping for some of our tax clients and we’re always here to answer their questions. If you ever want to know how something will affect your taxes next year, give us a call. See our website for our contact information and business hours.

* Feed your brain with information. Any time you see anything that says ‘tax break’ or similar information, get informed. This is a good way for you to make sure your taxes are done correctly. Ask questions of a tax professional, or do some research online if you like that avenue better. The IRS site has a lot of information, though much of it can be confusing for those not up to date on the tax lingo. The more research you do, the more informed you will be, and the less you will miss out on in the years to come.

* Keep a log of income and expenses for your business if you have one. This includes hobbies. There are possible deductions for these things. Buy a cheap composition notebook and write everything down. Detail dates and amounts and a general description of what it was for. Come tax time when you need to know what you made for the year, you will applaud yourself for all the time and frustration you just saved, not having to go back through bank statements, or digging through papers that you may, or may not have saved.

* Consider document scanning. This is a way for all your paperwork to be logged without you having to keep it around all year. If you are very disorganized, this is definitely a way to go. This is a service our office offers, but you can also buy a cheap document scanner these days if it’s for small volume things and you don’t mind the extra work.

Remember, we are here year round to help you with all your bookkeeping and tax related needs. We pride ourselves on our personal touch and friendly relationships with our client, and as such would be happy to hear from you at any time of the year. Check out our website for our contact information and hours.