Typically, when tax season is over, people tend to ignore anything that potentially can impact the following year’s income tax return until the next year. Here at Tax Alternatives we encourage all our valued clients to be proactive in order to avoid the surprises that can arise when tax season once again sneaks up on you. In order to help get you organized and keep you organized, we thought we would share these tips that will help you plan and prepare for your next year’s income tax return.
Take a Close Look at the Past Year
Analyzing your past year is an important first step when preparing for the up and coming tax year. By looking back at the past year and reviewing your income tax return you can familiarize yourself with what actually was beneficial in your return and certainly what may need improvement. Take a few moments to make a list of those items that contributed to your reduced tax bill last year. In addition, give focus to any deductions you may have had, such as education costs, donations, and work related expenses just to name a few. Once you have put together a list of last year’s deductions, then analyze them to determine which ones you will not be able to deduct again next year.
Plan Accordingly for the Future
There isn’t a one of us who can predict the future, but certainly all of us can make an honest effort to prepare for it. Give attention to your tax situation and whether or not it will change for the upcoming year. For example, do you plan to get married? Are you planning on having children which would certainly increase the number of dependents and ultimately reduce your taxes? There is a wide range of life changing events including buying or selling a home or even starting up your own business, that may require tax adjustments to your paycheck in anticipation of the upcoming tax year. It is important to stay atop of these types of changes since they can definitely affect your overall taxes.
Keep in mind if you find yourself confused and uncertain about changes you may need to make to your payroll taxes or the impact a specific life changing event can potentially have on your next year’s income tax return, take a moment and give a call out to one of our consultants. Our highly skilled and highly trained professionals can help you to understand your own situation and offer insight and even perform necessary withholding calculations for you if need be.
Stay Organized and Keep your Records Safe and Secure
It makes good sense to designate a specific place in your home for all your tax records and other important documents as well if you haven’t already done so. Keeping all types of files and records in one place will surely make filing your taxes next tax season a whole lot easier. Be certain that you keep your prior year’s tax returns in the same safe place and that they are easily accessible when the next tax year is upon you. Having an effective and efficient storage system for all your tax returns and important documents will certainly make your life a whole lot more organized and easier.
Be Aware and Stay Up To Date with Tax Codes
There is nothing quite so upsetting as finding out there are new tax codes and laws that directly affect you. It is important to stay up to date on tax codes, and familiarize yourself with any new tax credits or deductions that may be forthcoming as well as those that may be expiring. Again, the professionals here at Tax Alternatives can keep you apprised of any and all changes.
Nobody looks forward to tax season and having to file income tax returns, but certainly it is something none of us can avoid. With that said, it makes perfect sense to follow these simple steps above to prepare yourself in advance of the next income tax season. And don’t forget that we here at Tax Alternatives are here to provide you with all your own personal services needed to handle all your tax issues year after year.