Tax season is right around the corner and there's no better time to begin preparing than now.
Hopefully you have been preparing all year by saving and filing receipts, expenses, paperwork etc. in order to make taxes this year as painless as possible. If you haven't, it's not too late. Make a list of any transactions that you need documentation for and start tracking down how to get in touch with the people or companies who can give you copies. The sooner you start contacting and looking the better as people will only get busier the close it gets to April.
Many online banking programs offer filtering systems so that you can look for certain transactions. They often create graphs and charts that outline expenses and can help you sort out business expenses from personal ones. This is very beneficial for those who are self-employed and need to track down transactions to deduct. Banking statements can usually be accessed for at least a year prior and easily downloaded to your computer.
It's also a good time to start looking at your options for completing your tax return. Many websites offer specials leading up to tax season in order to secure registered users. Talk to friends and family for references on accountants or companies they have used in the past. Look for programs or companies who specialize in the type of work and tax help that you need assistance with. Tax laws and requirements can be confusing and the consequences of filing your taxes incorrectly can be disastrous. The IRS can come back years later for a simple and innocent mistake that can then cost you thousands of dollars in interest.
To better prepare for next year, make sure you save and file all receipts and documents. Consider keeping a running list of expenses or utilizing one account so that all of your transactions are easily accessible. Also make sure that you learn about potential deductions you can use and charitable donations that can save you lots of tax dollars.
Agency Fusion contributed this guest post, and offers help and assistance on organizing your business for the upcoming year.