What The Ascent Looks For In Good Tax Software
We all have different requirements when looking for great software of any kind, including tax software. Some may pay particular attention to an app’s usability, while others place more emphasis on the app’s functionality.
Here are some of the things the Ascent looked for when reviewing these widely used tax preparation apps.
Ease of use
We all want software to have cool features, but we also want it to be easy to access and use those features. In a perfect world, software applications would all be intuitive, so you don’t have to spend hours staring at the screen wondering how to access a feature or perform a function.
This is why ease of use is so important. During a test, we pay particular attention to the ease of use of a product.
While tech-savvy people and those experienced in a particular software application will find navigation a breeze, for the rest of us, an app’s ease of use can be the deciding factor for purchase. or not.
less is more
Instead of spending a lot of time entering a huge amount of data into a tax preparation application, wouldn’t it be nice to be able to import the data found on your W-2 or 1099?
If you only have one 1099, that’s probably not a big deal, but if you’re self-employed, chances are you’ll get at least a few 1099s by the end of the year. Being able to import these forms can save you a lot of time.
Access to a tax specialist
This can be especially important for new business owners who have never completed a Schedule C and have no idea what business expenses are deductible.
While all of the tax preparation software apps we’ve reviewed are successful (some better than others) in finding the adjustments and deductions your small business is entitled to, filling out a Schedule C for the first time is daunting. This is why having access to a tax specialist can be essential.
You may feel like you entered everything correctly, and chances are you did, but there’s nothing better than having your return reviewed by an experienced tax preparer or CPA. before submitting it to the IRS. Chances are everything will be fine, but with access to a tax professional, you don’t have to take that risk.
How your business can benefit from using tax software
Your small business can benefit in several ways from using tax software. Here are a few :
You’d be amazed at how quickly you can complete your tax return using tax preparation software. All tax preparation software is designed to be simple and efficient, allowing you to go through the entire process in less time than expected.
If you always prepare your returns on paper, opt for tax preparation software. You will never come back.
Unless you are a CPA or an experienced tax preparer, you may not know what deductions are available to you. In fact, if this is your first year filing taxes for your business, you may not know any of the tax deductions you can claim.
The tax software solves this problem immediately. It analyzes your answers to a few simple questions posed early in the tax preparation process, guiding you to available deductions, credits, and adjustments that are all designed to reduce your tax liability.
Helps avoid audits
The word “audit” can scare the best of us. While no tax software can guarantee that you won’t be audited, what it can do is reduce the risk of being audited by helping you prepare an accurate tax return. Not only that, but many of these apps also offer audit protection, guiding you through the auditing process.