I’m trying to decide if I should continue working with a tax professional for my 2016 filing year. I’ve been working with a tax pro for nearly 20 years now, but I feel like I do much of the grunt work of taxes by pulling all the data together and organizing it. If I just went one step further and filled out the forms, I could be done with the process and cut out the additional cost. If I’m guided by a good tax program, I shouldn’t miss any potential deductions or credits.
But I’m not sure if this is a good idea or a bad idea. So my questions to the grumpy nation are: What works for you: tax pro or personal preparation? Why do you choose to prepare your own taxes? Or, why do you choose to use a professional? If you prepare them yourself, do you use a tax program? Which one do you recommend?
#1’s family does not use a tax professional exactly for the reasons you say– pulling the data together and organizing it is the biggest time-sink and tax programs are pretty good these days. We do make mistakes from time to time (previously mistakes have been on state taxes back when we lived in a state with complicated taxes), but we’re not sure that a tax professional would have been any better.
That said, #1 has a friend who has a much easier tax return but uses H&R block anyway because she wants their protection if a mistake is made or she’s audited. For the risk averse, that makes sense.
#2 uses TurboTax
#1 used to use Turbo Tax but then there was that year where they messed up something that would have forced us to spend more money on a different package of their software for something small and stupid, so we switched to TaxAct.
Both our partners do the taxes instead of us. Because doing taxes stresses #1 out and #2’s DH has weird stock whatevers that only he understands.