Just because October is the designated month for all things spooky and scary, doesn’t mean that you have to be frightened by the upcoming October 16th tax extension deadline. Let’s face it, dealing with taxes is often an overwhelming fete regardless of the season. That’s why we at McGrant Tax and Bookkeeping have compiled some expert tips and recommendations to help ensure your October is all treats and no tricks.
Keep in mind that October also marks the beginning of the fiscal year’s fourth quarter, making it an ideal time for businesses to consider engaging in some end-of-the-year tax housekeeping. When it comes to taxes and bookkeeping, it’s never too soon to start getting your ducks in a row. Here are three ways to help take control of your finances as we draw closer to the extension deadline and subsequently, the end of the calendar year:
Tip #1- Review and File Your 2022 Tax Return
Many tax filers are under the impression that it’s better to submit incorrect documentation on time rather than wait to file error-free returns at a later date. In actuality, filing incorrect documentation on time will not save you from having to go back and amend your mistakes. It is at best a tedious undertaking and at worst a costly mistake.
If you’re starting to feel like the walls are caving in due to the rapidly approaching deadline, take a deep breath, and remember there’s still time to get everything sorted out. The usual October 15th tax deadline just so happens to fall on a Sunday this year. As a result, this year’s extension deadline has been pushed to October 16th, giving you an additional day to tie up loose ends.
If your adjusted gross income lands at $73,000 or less, you can use the online no-cost tax preparation and e-filing tool. With seven tax software companies to choose from, you can pick the program best suited to help you meet your extended filing obligation. For added peace of mind, you can always enlist the help of a tax professional to ensure everything is copacetic.
Tip #2- Make Certain The October 16th Deadline Applies to You
Nearly every rule has its exceptions, and the extended tax deadline is no different. Many states and regions that experienced natural disasters this year have been granted an extra grace period by the IRS and are not required to file returns by October 16th. Listed below are the amendments that have been provided for eight different states.
October 31, 2023: Alaska and Illinois taxpayers who live in areas that were struck by storms and flooding will be required to file returns by this date.
November 15, 2023: Vermont Taxpayers will face this deadline due to statewide flooding.
February 15, 2024: Finally, several states will adhere to this February deadline including Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina where taxpayers were affected by Hurricane Idalia.
The big islands of Hawai’i and Maui where residents endured wildfires.
And finally, Louisiana, specifically residents in New Orleans who are dealing with the effects of saltwater intrusion in the Mississippi River.
In addition to natural disaster-related grace periods, please note that certain military members are also eligible for extensions. If you are active military and are currently serving in a combat zone the IRS has granted you a 180-day extension from the last day of your service in that area. The IRS has provided more information regarding this policy which can be found here. You can also always follow up with a tax professional who can debrief you on potential tax breaks and benefits you may not be aware of as an active member of the service.
Tip #3 Prepare Your Home for the Imminent Cold Front
It’s hard to believe that cool weather is finally on the horizon after months of excess heat warnings and record-breaking temperatures. Cold weather is rapidly approaching, and it will likely affect your finances in ways you might not anticipate. Right now is an ideal time to start preparations before we enter the thick of winter. Cooler temperatures are often hard on older homes and infrastructure, which is why you might consider looking into economical house improvements.
At this point, you’re probably wondering how home improvement projects relate to tax advice. It all began in 2022 when the Biden administration passed the Inflation Reduction Act, a revised economic and tax package that deals with residential tax breaks. The Inflation Reduction Act is multi-faceted; however, the possible savings include tax credits for projects like exchanging old drafty windows and doors for new and improved energy-efficient varieties. But that’s not all, you can also receive tax breaks for installing energy-efficient furnace systems.
What was previously known as the Inflation Reduction Act is now referred to as the Energy Efficient Home Improvement Credit, worth up to $1,200 per year for eligible changes implemented between January 1st, 2023, and December 31, 2032. The Energy Efficient Home Improvement Credit’s ten-year lifespan can help you plan out your necessary home improvement projects over time. To learn more about the credit including the maximum amount of money you can claim per year and the credit’s qualifications, the IRS has set up a webpage outlining its parameters.
Are You Still Feeling Anxious? It’s Time To Consult the Professionals
Throughout the past two decades, more and more taxpayers have been relying on self-guided software and programming to file returns and other tax documentation. While this method works for many people, there are still a handful of reasons why you might want to consider consulting a tax and bookkeeping professional.
Reputable professionals like our team at McGrant Tax and Bookkeeping in Charlotte, North Carolina can ensure that your taxes are not only filed on time per the extension deadline but done so in an error-free manner. While it may cost you more upfront, the benefits and peace of mind far outweigh the initial investment.
Give yourself the gift of time this October and relish in all things fall, while still ensuring that you meet all of your tax obligations. Our team at McGrant is here to help you, now, and as we prepare to enter the new year.
At McGrant Tax And Bookkeeping, we are here to help answer all your questions regarding your tax deductions as your primary bookkeeper in Charlotte NC. Please feel free to contact us today at any of our two locations or visit our website https://mcgranttax.com and book an online or physical appointment.
This post is to be used for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal, business, or tax advice. Each person should consult his or her attorney, business advisor, or tax advisor concerning matters referenced in this post. McGrant Tax and Bookkeeping assumes no liability for actions taken in reliance upon the information contained herein.