[custom_frame_left][/custom_frame_left]With Thanksgiving in sight and Christmas only about 50 days away, taxes are probably the very last thing on your mind. April 15 is still months and months away, but there are plenty of good reasons to start preparing now.
Have your files in order
If you’re like me, your paperwork is kind of in order – on a good day. I can usually find the things I need, but sometimes it takes quite a bit of time searching through files and papers. But if you start organizing receipts and paycheck stubs now, you won’t be scrambling around the night before your meeting with your accountant. You can also make sure you have critical records available and you’ll know ahead of time if there is any documentation that you need to obtain before you file your taxes.
Are you sure you’re aware of every write-off you qualify for? Preparing now will make sure you know about any business or personal expenses that you will need documentation for. There is also the possibility of significant tax changes beginning in January. You may want to talk to your accountant about any adjustments that need to be made before the end of the year in light of these changes.
Take action now
There may be an early mortgage or property tax payment you can make this year that could lead to beneficial itemizing come tax time. You may want to take the time to assess your situation to see if you can better optimize your itemizing.
Find your professional now
If you need to find a new accountant, now is the time. If you start now, you can make sure you get an appointment in plenty of time, at your convenience. If you’re planning on filing your own taxes, now is the time to choose which program works best for you and make sure you’re familiar with the software.
Beat the rush
The IRS is frequently backlogged with returns the closer it gets to April 15. So the sooner you get your taxes filed, the sooner you get your return.