Spring is for flowers and sunshine and rainstorms and….taxes! There are two kinds of taxpayers: the Eager To Get This Over With taxpayer and the Filing My Taxes at Midnight on Tax Day taxpayer.
No matter which category you fall into, Painesville Credit Union has a few tried-and-true tips to get you through the tax filing stress.
1. Double check your Social Security Number.
“If your handwriting is unclear and an 8 looks like a 0 or a 4 looks like a 9, or if you superimpose two of the numbers, you might stumble into some trouble with your return,” said Painesville Credit Union CEO Lori Guzzi. “Just go ahead and double check those numbers. It’s worth the extra two seconds to make sure they’re right.”
2. Don’t forget to list your charitable deductions. “Any donation you make under $500 is a normal deduction, but anything donated over the value of $500 requires an additional form,” Guzzi said.
3. Double check your math. Even the smallest addition or subtraction error can derail your return. “Do the math three times,” Guzzi said. “Just to make sure you’re getting consistent answers.”
4. Don’t forget to report any freelance or side work on your return.
5. Direct deposit can expedite your return, but only if you give the government the correct account number. “Double check, double check, double check those account numbers!” Guzzi said.
6. Choose your filing status carefully. “File under that status that best suits your situation,” Guzzi said. “You can file as single, married filing jointly, married filing separately, head of household, or widow or widower with a dependent.”
7. And last but not least: Don’t forget to sign your return. “The IRS considers your return incomplete without your signature,” Guzzi said. “And unfortunately, people do forget to sign the bottom of the form, which can cause a delay in their return.”