Well it’s a good feeling to have Tax Week behind us. I’ve always dealt with my own taxes, they’ve never been particularly difficult to cope with. But this year I decided to get the help of a CPA. It’s something I’ve always thought about doing, but have just never been organized enough to do. Usually the new year begins, I think about Tax Day on the horizon, then after all my procrastination it’s suddenly the end of March.
I finally got my backside in gear and did it this year because my freelance work is massively increasing, and has now progressed from just a hobby to a business venture. So it made sense to get some expert financial help. Although I’ve always coped doing my taxes without any problem, I knew that I was likely missing out on a lot of tax breaks, just from not knowing about them. Additionally, since my business expenditure and income is getting more complex, I wanted to make sure I was getting my quarterly payments right.
I actually managed to find a great CPA very close to where I live (highly recommended to me by another CPA who I’d called, but was too booked-up to fit me in) and spent an hour discussing things with him. I’d taken everything from my “financial file” to the appointment, including the list of things I usually plug into my tax software for tax breaks, and yet I still came out with a list of things to email him information about. Things that I was unaware I could add to that list, like:
- Annual car mileage
- Home insurance costs
As well as feeling good about the fact that I’d be able to sleep easy, knowing my CPA would be able to get my quarterlies right, it’s great to know that he’ll get me all the tax breaks possible. Plus, my taxes only took me about an hour and a half! Basically just the time of an appointment with my CPA & a little research to find some additional information for him when I got home. It was very freeing just to hand over my documents and let an expert do all the work.
I’m still waiting to hear the final, final word from him, but my quarterly estimated payment for April was mailed out last week, and he tells me that it’s looking like I’ll get somewhere in the region of $1500 as a refund – I certainly wouldn’t have received that on my own! In recent years, I’ve really just drawn even by doing my own taxes.
So if you’re just setting up in your business venture, or if you’re like me and have often pondered on the value of using the services of a tax professional, but have just never done it – I can definitely give a thumbs-up to an appointment with a CPA next year. I chose not to use one of the H&R Block types – I didn’t simply want someone to plug in my numbers, I wanted someone to give me some financial advice for my business, so I chose this particular office on that basis.
And just as an aside, I actually just found this article about my CPA – what a success story, and so heartwarming!
All in all, I wish I’d done it sooner!
Hope your taxes weren’t too traumatizing.
Image credit Grant Cochrane @FreeDigitalPhotos