5 Things You Should Do Now to Prepare for Tax Season

November 22, 2019

Tax season runs from the beginning of January to April 15, when IRS returns are due. As for California state taxes, any payments you owe must be made by April 15. However, you have until mid-October to file the associated form(s). In any case, here’s the scoop from Encino Tax Consultants on five things that’ll help you prepare for tax season.

1. Keep Track of Business Expenses

During tax season, contractors and self-employed people must fill out a Schedule C with information about their business. To speed up this process, keep track of business expenses throughout the year. Take the time now to decide how you’ll do it and how/where you’ll organize receipts, files and the like.

2. Maintain Documentation from Income Sources

Also, stay on top of documents relating to rental income, investment income, unemployment income or other income sources. Your W-2 or 1099s should arrive in January.

3. Gather Personal Information

You may know your Social Security number, but what about your spouse’s or your children’s? Get that information now (along with last year’s tax return) so you don’t have to scramble later.

4. Contact a Tax Preparation Service

If you’re thinking about enlisting a tax preparer, get in touch with a service sooner rather than later. Some may be too busy from January to April to take on a certain number of new clients (or they might charge more money). Plus, Los Angeles Tax Preparation services can discuss your situation ahead of time and offer customized advice.

5. Plan Some of Your Expenses

You may want to skip making a charitable contribution until next year or you may want to accelerate tax deductions. Planning your expenses could help you get more money back every other year (by itemizing) rather than barely missing the deduction thresholds every year. Encino Tax Advisors also explain that tax-loss harvesting can offset some investment gains.

Not all of these items may apply to your situation. Get in touch with a tax professional for customized advice.