Each year millions of taxpayers gather documents needed to file their annual tax return. Many of these taxpayers will hand these documents over to an accountant or other tax preparers to ensure their taxes are filed in time for the April deadline. This makes a lot of sense as many taxpayers are overwhelmed with the entire process, thanks to the ever-changing tax laws. There are other options for those who want to try their hand at preparing their own tax return. Online tools and software make it possible for everyone, even those without a gift for numbers, to prepare their own tax return, saving time and money in the process. Here we take a closer look at one of the more popular tools available to taxpayers, to see why more and more people are willing to try to prepare their own taxes.
TurboTax is an online tax preparation software system. In recent years the number of people using TurboTax has steadily increased with all types of filers taking advantage of this online tool today. Taxpayers can choose from several different editions ranging in cost from free to $74.95 for the Home & Business edition. Basically, TurboTax software is to tax preparation what GPS is to directions. It takes you through each step, guiding the taxpayer along the way to ensure all deduction and credits are claimed as well as ensuring all the proper documents are filed.
Which edition is right for you?
Filers can choose from five different editions. Depending on your specific tax filing situation and how much assistance you need, one of the following editions may be the best choice for easily and conveniently filing your taxes from the comfort of your own home.
- Free edition- As the name implies, this is the only edition of TurboTax that is at no cost to the filer. Best used by taxpayers who are preparing simple returns which require little or no additional guidance. If you have not used online tax preparation software before and need additional help, you can opt to continue from the free edition with the following paid editions.
- Basic edition- This is the next step up from the free edition. Again, aimed at individuals who have a simple return, but may need additional help in the preparation. The cost is $19.95 and includes the ability to transfer the previous year’s tax info and import W-2’s and 1099s.
- Deluxe edition- One of the most popular editions costing filers $29.95. Filers using the Deluxe edition will have access to features in the free and basic editions plus many more. Taxpayers using the Deluxe edition can search for deductions and alert filers of audit risks.
- Premier edition- Filers with a more complicated tax return can still take advantage of TurboTax software with the Premier edition. At $49.95 you have additional features that allow you to handle investments and rental properties.
- Home & Business edition- The most expensive edition, yet more affordable than what the average accountant will charge, the Home & Business edition will cost taxpayers $74.95. This edition is the most advanced offering all the features available in the previous editions plus the ability to handle any business-related tax issues.
In addition to providing all of these features making it possible for filers to prepare their taxes at home, TurboTax also provides online support as well as technical support. This makes TurboTax one of the most sought after tax preparation systems available to filers.