Should you file your own taxes? It’s an important decision to make and it all depends on your situation.
When should you file your own taxes?
If you have a very simple return with, say, employment income and nothing else, then you can probably file your own taxes quite easily.
If you’re already familiar with the tax software, then perfect. If not, then you should familiarize yourself with it – perhaps with the assistance of someone else who has already used it. You don’t need to be a tech-wiz, but a little bit of tech-savvy will go a long way.
Of course, you’ll need to be able to set aside some time and have a little bit of patience!
When should you hire a professional?
If you have a somewhat or relatively complicated return, such as one that includes business or investment income, employment expenses or dependents, then you should definitely be seriously considering hiring a professional.
Complicated returns do bring more room for error as well as more room for tax savings and strategies. The right professional will most likely have seen situations similar to yours, numerous times, and should be able to identify opportunities for you.
Consider the value of your personal time. If you’d rather spend it with your family or doing something else you love and enjoy, then outsourcing to a professional will allow you to do just that. Completing your return can be tedious and time consuming and may test your patience depending on your experience.
Assess and acknowledge whether you have a peculiar situation or special circumstances with ongoing matters requiring appropriate attention. If that’s the case, then you should lean towards someone who is easily accessible year-round.
Are you wondering who you should be hiring? Get a referral. Referrals are probably your best option – ask your friends, family or other professionals you know who have already personally used somebody for their tax services. That saves you time from having to check their credibility.