You may decide that you're comfortable doing taxes on your own and that you're sure you can do it right. Using tax accounting software can be like having a virtual accountant to guide you through the process. Once you decide to see a tax preparer, be sure to ask them how the rates were determined if your bill is much higher than you expected. She co-developed an online DIY tax preparation product, and served as chief operating officer for seven years.
While some people with complex financial situations may benefit from getting professional help filing their taxes, many people can file their own taxes and skip the professional preparation fee. Tax professionals set prices for preparing tax returns in a variety of ways, so it can be a bit like comparing apples to oranges when looking for the best deal. When you pay a professional to do your taxes, you get the added benefit of many other services, such as accounting, record keeping, tax consulting, and auditing. Ultimately, your expenses will depend on how complicated your situation is and how much tax preparers in your area charge for their services.
Walk-in sites operate on a first-come, first-served basis and will have a waiting list if all preparers are busy with other taxpayers. It's essential to remember that these are the average charges; the cost will vary if parts of your tax returns are in exceptional cases and the accountant takes longer to complete. As you prepare to file your taxes for the year, consider all your options and choose the one that makes the most sense for your financial situation. To ensure that you are not charged any fees, you should visit the Department of Taxation website to complete your return.
If you have a simple situation, you may be able to file your taxes on your own using different types of tax software. Be sure to bring your most recent tax return, all W-2, 1099 and other income documents, as well as real estate documents and receipts to prove deductible expenses.