Whether you have someone else do it, or do it yourself, now is the time to start working on your taxes. Just like any other part of financial planning, doing your taxes requires a bit of time and attention. And, if you start now to do a little bit here and there, you won’t be so stressed when April rolls around. You might even be done.
Even if you don’t have things like your W-2 back, you can still start organizing. You can look at the IRS Web site to see what forms you will need. You can begin gathering documentation. Are your going all out for the phone excise tax refund, or will you just take the standard deduction? Looking at the forms can help you figure out what will be worth the time, and what won’t.
Even if you have someone else prepare your taxes, you can still plan ahead. Call your preparer to get a general idea of what he or she will need to get your taxes done. Then you can begin gathering needed documents so that when you head in, you have everything you need and the process isn’t held up as your preparer waits for you to find something else.
Finally, prepare for next year. Think about what you needed this year, and then set up a system where you automatically keep that information in a specific place. That way it will be easier to find next year.