Five Tips for Your 2014 Taxes

Managing, planning, and filing your yearly taxes can be a daunting and confusing task at times, leaving much room for human error. In fact, last year alone, American’s cumulatively missed out on over one-billion dollars in their tax refunds due to personal file errors. 

There are a few easy steps you can take to make sure you get every penny back that you are owed this year, however. 

1: Set Up a Yearly Tax File: Keep a file, may it be a physical file, a shoe box, or an electronic file, of all of your documents and/or transactions  the entire year that could potentially affect your tax return. An electronic file (created by simply scanning and saving in a file on your computer any receipts or documents, such W2’s,. escrow papers, divorce papers, vehicle registration, etc.) is more convenient because at the end of the year you can simply send the file over to your tax accountant, making both of your lives easier during tax season. 

2: Make a Mid-Year Tax Check Appointment: Checking into your tax and financial situation half-way through the year may allow you to notice and address any unwanted changes in your finances, as well as plan for intentional changes that may have occurred that year, such as marriage, divorce, selling a home, starting a family, etc. 

3. Manage Your Retirement Plan: Look into your current retirement plan and see if you could possibly contribute more monthly, and make sure you are taking advantage of an employer match. If you do not already have a retirement plan of some kind, consider opening an IRA or a ROTH IRA. Your personal bank will be able to assist you in making the best retirement plan decision based on your own unique financial situation. 

4. Make a Log of Important Dates: The IRS is diligent in delivering penalties to those who pay late, so making a log of any personally applicable due dates or application dates can reduce the chance of late payment penalties. 

5. Keep Up on Tax Laws: Tax laws can literally change over-night, so keeping up to date with current changes can make a big difference in your tax refund. 

Sources: Fox Business

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