Did you know that in 2018, 43% of Americans chose to prepare their own tax returns? If you are thinking about filing your own taxes and want to learn how to do your own taxes, you are in the right place. We have put together this short guide to share how you can file taxes yourself.
Keep reading to learn the ins and outs of filing your taxes.
1. Gather All of Your Documents
Before you start doing your taxes you need to get organized with all of your tax documents and forms. Gather documents such as your W-2s, 1099s, investment income statements, mortgage interest statements, and charitable contribution statements. All of these forms should be in your mailbox or email inbox by January 31st.
If for any reason you are missing any forms by the first week of February, contact your employer, or the person in charge of the document you are missing.
2. To Itemize or Take Standard Deductions?
Once you choose the software to file your taxes you will have to decide if you want to itemize your deductions or take the standard deduction. Tax deductions are important because they can significantly lower how much of your income is taxed.
If you choose to itemize your deductions you will just need proof to back up those claims. If for some reason you end up making a mistake and the IRS contacts you, you will want to click here to hire a professional that will help you navigate this situation.
3. Filing Status
Next, you need to choose if you will be filing single, married filing jointly, married filing separately, head of household, or qualifying widow(er). The most common ones are either single or married filing jointly.
4. Filing Time
You can opt to file online and also choose the option to receive your refund (if you are owed one) via direct deposit. This is the quickest way to file your taxes and receive a refund. You can also opt to print out your taxes and send them in via regular mail.
If you opt to do it through the postal service just make sure you give yourself enough time to avoid filing your taxes late. For those that have less complicated taxes, then filing them is a pretty straightforward process where you answer the questions and fill in the boxes. When you choose an online software sometimes you can pay a little extra to ask questions if you get stuck at any time.
How to File Taxes Yourself: A Complete Guide
We hope that now that you learned more about how to file taxes yourself you are feeling more confident moving forward with your own taxes. Please keep in mind that if you are not feeling confident, then it is better to hire an accountant just to be safe rather than sorry.
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