Make it easy on yourself and get the money you deserve.
If basically all your income is from a regular job that provides a W-2 form, you don't need to go to a tax preparer.
I know — taxes can get scary , and some people address that fear by hiring a tax preparer every year to do their worrying for them. Thing is, if your income is from a regular job that takes taxes out of your paycheck and your employer gives you a W-2 form, you'll be fine doing your own taxes with the help of a computer program or online service.
If you have many sources of income, multiple investments, or do freelance work that requires to you to make payments every quarter, then you should consider a tax preparer. But if you just work a normal job, you'll be totally fine doing it on your own.
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You can file your taxes easily with programs like TurboTax and TaxACT.
These days, programs like TurboTax and TaxACT make it super-easy to file your taxes electronically. They remove all of the complicated directions and calculations on tax forms in favor of asking you questions about your job and life to get you your maximum refund. And you can easily use either one online.
TurboTax / Via YouTube
And these programs are (sometimes) free to use.
It's worth mentioning how the top two tax programs (TurboTax and TaxACT) break down before you decide to spend your money on them:
TurboTax has four editions to choose from. In all versions, filing federal taxes is free, while filing state taxes is about $20. If you're filing more than a simple W-2 form, you may need to pay for an upgrade to a more complex version, but the program will ask you questions to help to determine that, so don't worry if you're not sure which one you need.
TaxACT has three editions to choose from, and all versions can file federal taxes for free. With the Deluxe and Ultimate editions, state tax filing is included, and is $14.99 in the Free version. TaxACT doesn't have as many features as TurboTax, but it is significantly cheaper.
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Still want someone to help with your taxes? See if there's a Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) site in your area.
If you're still a bit worried about doing your own taxes (who could blame you?) and make $53,000 or less, the IRS has a program called Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA), which has sites in every state staffed with volunteers to help you. You can find a VITA site in your area by going to this website, and all you'll need is your tax forms, your ID, and your Social Security number to get the help you need.
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