The hustle and bustle of the holiday season is over. For children, this means another long year until next holiday season. For adults, another season is about to take center stage. Tax season is never as fun as the holidays, but with the right tools, you might find yourself the recipient of a lot more than you expected.
Several smartphone applications are available to make tax season as painless as possible.
Created by the IRS itself, IRS2Go allows you to keep tabs on the status of your refund right from your mobile phone. The app lets you check the status of an e-filed return within a few days or a traditionally filed return after a few weeks. You can also sign up to receive tax tips via email. IRS2Go is free and available on phone iPhone and Android devices.
Keeping receipts can be a pain. If you remember to keep the right ones at all, they end up cluttered in a shoe box that you’re likely to forget the location of come tax season. Tax Organizer allows you to take a picture of your important receipts and then stores them in an online account for safekeeping. When tax season rolls around, you can view the receipts of email them to your tax preparer. Receipts are arranged in chronological order for added efficiency. This app is available on both iPhones and Android phones. The first two weeks are free. After that, there is a monthly fee.
To go along with lost receipts for things you buy are the receipt that you receive when you donate an item or amount of money. iDonatedIt allows you to make a list of the items you have donated. You can take a picture of individual items as well as keep track of their value and where and when they were donated. Simply email the list to yourself or your accountant when it is time to file your taxes. The app, available on iPhones, costs a one-time fee of $2.99.
Dictionary of Tax Terms
You may opt to file your taxes yourself in order to save money, but deciphering all of the legal terms can cause you to spend that saved money on something for your headache. Dictionary of Tax Terms lists more than 600 of the words and phrases you will find throughout your tax forms along with an easy-to-understand definition. The app not only helps you to follow rules, but also aids in taking advantage of every deduction that you possibly can. The app is available on iPhones and BlackBerries and costs a one-time price of $1.99.
If you are filing a simple tax return, you can use SnapTax and file straight from your phone. Created by TurboTax, the app is great for people that only had one job, do not receive special deductions, do not have dependents and that make less than $80,000 per year. Filing is as easy as answering a few basic questions, taking a picture of your W-2 form and sending it in. Downloading the application is free, but it will cost to actually file your tax return. SnapTax is available on Android and iPhone devices.