It might not be April yet, but it’s still tax season! Typically, tax season rules from January 1 to April 15, but this year, it’s running from January 24 to April 18. Due to state holidays, taxpayers in Massachusetts and Maine have until April 19 to submit their tax returns. But even if you have some extra time, why wait?
Procrastination and Taxes
About one third of Americans file their taxes at the last minute, according to a report by IPX 1031. 40% of respondents claimed that they waited because they felt the process was too time consuming, 22% said it was too complicated and 22% said that they took the extra time to make sure their tax information was correct. Filing taxes can sometimes be frustrating and confusing, but it doesn’t have to be. Getting an early start on tax season can help give you the leg up you need.
Why File Early?
Last year’s average tax refund was $2,800, according to the IRS. That’s a significant chunk of change, and you could get it earlier if you file your taxes early.
When you file early, you’ll have far less stress to deal with during tax season. Since you have time to collect all of the documents and information you need, you won’t have to suffer through the last-minute scramble. Taking the extra time to plan ahead and assemble all the necessary documents can make your life a lot easier. As soon as your tax forms start arriving in the mail, put them in a safe place like a file box or folder. Don’t forget to save your receipts from any tax-deductible purchases throughout the year.
When you’re prepared ahead of time and filing early, you’ll most likely submit a more accurate return. The more accurate your tax return is, the more likely you are to get the refund to which you are entitled.
Filing early can also help to avoid tax fraud. Fraudsters have a habit of submitting phony tax returns with stolen Social Security numbers early on in the season. When you file your taxes early, you can beat them to the punch.
Some people procrastinate on their taxes because they’re worried that they’ll be hit with a tax bill instead of a refund for that year. But filing early will still help even if you wind up owing money. If you’re hit with a tax bill early on in tax season, you have more time to decide what plan is right for you.
Many people wait to do their taxes because they’re intimidated by the process, but filing your taxes doesn’t have to be hard. The good news is that you don’t have to go far to find software like TaxAct, which is designed to help users navigate the complexity of taxes with ease and accuracy. TaxAct makes DIY tax filing fast, easy and affordable.
Are you ready to start filing your 2021 taxes? AAA members can save 25% on tax prep and filings with TaxAct.
When do you usually start doing your taxes? Let us know in the comments below.