Yeah, you heard that right. I’m super pumped to file my taxes this year. Not something you hear often, I know, but I am really looking forward to it. Why? I’m a nerd who is excited to spend a snow day hanging curtains and doing taxes. Other than that?
1. We’re eligible for a refund
My husband and I are in a lower tax bracket (read: we don’t make a lot of money) and because he is in school we are eligible for education credits like the American Opportunity Credit and the Lifetime Learning Credit. Of course we can’t take both of these but we can take the one that nets us the largest benefit/credit. This means that every year we are eligible for a pretty sizable refund and we are banking (literally) on this refund to pay for our plane tickets to England for my sister’s wedding this summer. We have some funds saved but we realized that we wouldn’t have enough in time and this tax refund is solving that financial problem. Thanks Obama (lol).
2. Mystery Shopping Expenses are Tax Deductible
Yes, money earned from mystery shopping, online surveys, freelance writing, and any other means is income and it must be counted as income on your taxes. The good thing is that expenses associated with mystery shopping, namely car mileage, can be tax deductible. Be sure to keep records of your mileage and get that deduction!
3. Moving Expenses are Tax Deductible
We moved halfway across the country in 2013 and because it was for a new job here those expenses are tax deductible too. We moved ourselves by asking friends to help load and unload the UHaul truck, then drove it myself down to Louisiana from DC. That ended up costing around $1600 including the truck rental, motel, and gas costs, so we did it pretty cheaply. TurboTax ended up suggesting that we would be better off taking the standard deduction than the itemized deduction which included our moving costs because they weren’t that high. So my cheapness didn’t save me on the tax front this time but I was still excited to figure out how much I could save and find out my deduction amount.
4. I Love Tracking Expenses and Crunching Numbers, But Thank God for TurboTax
I love spreadsheets, lists, and tediously tracking expenditures, so taxes are right up my alley. Yes, they are still stressful and it takes hours to track down all the paperwork, dig through my records for that item’s amount, and try to understand what the tax software is asking me, but I still enjoy it. Taxes aren’t as painful when you use TurboTax and I have always used them to do my own taxes. TurboTax is really easy and their free edition has all the same simplicity of the paid editions so I would highly recommend them. Of course, I cheap out and don’t pay them to file the state taxes and just do it myself through the state website.
No this is not a sponsored post for TurboTax, I just highly recommend the company and use them every year.