Photo courtesy Howdy, I'm H. Michael Karshis
It’s that time of year again. TAX TIME! Honestly, I don’t know why I get all excited about tax time. I really don’t get much of a refund from the Feds and what I do get usually goes to the State of Michigan. I guess it is the number crunching accountant in me that loves tax time. That is the only thing I really miss out on not being in public accounting – taxes! I love doing tax returns. Anymore, though, I’m not qualified. So I live vicariously through one of my BFFs and she would probably tell me that it’s no picnic.
Anyway, since I can’t do anyone else’s tax return, I am going to do my best to arm you with the ability to do it yourself. Do it yourself! You can! It isn’t hard, I promise! If your tax returns are fairly simple, meaning you had one or two jobs, you are single, you are married and each had one job, maybe a child, own a home or rent, possibly have a few charitable deductions, you can totally do you own taxes online. AND you might even qualify to do them for FREE. Let me repeat that…FOR FREE. Eff. Are. Eee. Eee!
First of all, check your state’s treasury website. Usually they list online tax programs and the requirements for each program to file for free. The State of Michigan lists programs that allow you to file just the State return for free, just the Federal return for free, and programs that allow you to file both for free. I have had to use two programs to be able to file each return for free, but, it is so worth it to save the ungodly amount of money that those tax places charge.
As a general rule, there are income limitations. And some programs are shotty. I have a tendency to try a few of them to see if I get similar results. Most programs allow you to input all of your information, see the result, and pay only when you actually submit the return to the IRS or the State. And, of course, if you don’t happen to qualify for a free program, there are a number of great programs to choose from and compare prices. Most of them are cheaper than paying big bucks to have someone else do them for you.
Without further ado, here are a few resources for you to check out. I hope you will give it a try and let me know how it turned out for you.
Free File State of Michigan
Low priced online tax preparation for State of Michigan and Federal
The IRS doesn’t have their choice of programs up yet, but they are telling you to check back January 15.