When it comes to filing your tax returns, everyone stresses out. All those withholdings (Federal, State, etc.) were painful, but then also add in the actual cost and process of preparing the tax returns…enough.

According to the National Society of Accountants, tax preparation fees average $176 for filing Form 1040 and your state return. On a regional level, New England states and Pacific states have additional premiums to make matters worse.

But rather than move to North Dakota to save a few bucks, online services such as Turbotax and H&R Block offer free, (yes, free) tax preparation services that might be ideal for you.

Is Online Filing Right For Me?

For simple tax filers, you should consider online filing to see if you might be able to save time and money. This solution might be appropriate if any of these apply:

  1. You make less than 100k per year.
  2. You do not own a home.
  3. You didn't sell any investments.
  4. You do not own a business.
  5. You do not have itemized deductions (or don't know what this means).

Online tax preparation walks you through the entire process in a highly organized manner (and even the 3:00am time slot is available!). It allows you to put together your returns and file all necessary forms to complete your filing requirements. They also check your math and when you submit your returns, you are done. It's just like mailing them, but with no need to pay for postage (added bonus)!

Once you get started with online filing, the following years' preparation will also be easier since all the data can be saved.

So what if you have a more complicated return? First, congratulations are in order! Second, don't lose any sleep, as they both offer low cost solutions to meet your needs.

For more on how to file your taxes online, click here!

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