Should you hire a tax professional? It’s a question most people ask at least once in their lives. Out of a desire to save money in the short term, many people choose to forego hiring a tax professional. Others avoid tax professional help because they fear spending more money will only worsen their debt. The truth is, as life gets more complicated, so do taxes. Marriage, kids, mortgages and assets make each tax return more and more involved. These are just a few reasons you should consider hiring a tax professional.
You Don’t Have the Time (or Patience)
You lead a busy life--a spouse, kids, two or three jobs, pets and other obligations take up too much of your time to worry about taxes. When January 1st rolls around, it’s time to gather and organize all of the essential documents, gather receipts on all applicable expenses, itemize deductions and so much more. Don’t forget--this is all due in April.
Do you know the ins and outs of the tax code? Most people don’t. Reading up on the latest adjustment in the tax code is tedious at best, and that job is best left in the hands of a professional. It’s part of a tax preparer’s job to keep up to date on new rules and regulations and use them to your advantage. They’ll take your return, examine every mundane detail, and give you the best of the best with no hassle to you.
Your Marital Status has Changed
If you got married or divorced on or before December 31, you need to reevaluate your tax return. A tax professional will gather your financial information and that of your spouse (if you’re married) and determine the best way to file.
Moving changes the game when it comes to taxes, and whether you’re moving to another city, another state, or another country you’ll have to adjust your taxes accordingly. Hire a professional that has experience where you’re moving to or has international tax preparation experience. They can determine whether you’re eligible for certain credits or breaks that you can receive in one place but not another.
You Have Dependents or Support a Family Member
Having kids changes the game when it comes to taxes. Your return will vary based on whether they’re a dependent, you give or receive alimony, and whether or not you have custody. If you’re the primary caregiver to a close member of your family, you can also receive tax breaks.
You Own a Small Business
Getting a small business off the ground is tough, and it doesn’t help when tax season rolls around. Businesses file quarterly taxes, so it’s crucial that you get help early to stay on top of your finances. Hire a tax professional to keep you on the right track. Every state has different laws regarding small business taxes, so let a local professional make sure you’re getting the most out of your return.
You Have Assets
If you own any piece of valuable real estate, stocks, bonds, or other assets you should enlist the help of a tax professional. Depending on the nature of your investment and where you’ve invested, you may be subject to certain laws and restrictions that can affect your taxes. Avoid getting penalized by having a tax professional fill out those tricky forms for you.
You’ve Made Mistakes in the Past
You’ve probably made a mistake or two on your taxes in your time. Even the most diligent eye can miss a small detail on a tax return, but a tax professional can help. If you’re aware of any past mistakes, a certified tax professional can fix them and minimize the damage. Don’t let mistakes build over time. A tax payment plan can help you through even the toughest tax situations. Reduce their effects by letting a tax preparer smooth them out.
Hiring an experienced professional to do your taxes is the best decision in the long run. Even though they come at a cost, you may find yourself saving thousands of dollars over time.