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4 Free & Easy Ways to Organize Your Taxes

April 1, 2016

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taxes

4 Free & Easy Ways to Organize Your Taxes

There’s something about the spring that makes everything seem so much more relaxed when compared with the rest of the year.

Is this just a natural byproduct of the longer days, the extra sunlight, and the warm grass between our toes?

Sure, that’s part of it, but want to know the real reason we feel better in the spring?

Because we do more.

We walk more. We spend more time engaging in physical activity outside. Aside from recreation, we also do more things around the house. We clean, we arrange, we organize. Getting stuff done might not sound exciting, but the feeling of accomplishment we receive when the work is done is worth it.

Taxes are a big hurdle, no question about it. But instead of worrying about your taxes this spring, think about how good you’ll feel once they’re checked off your list.

Here’s a couple ways to make the process more seamless than ever this year.

1. Make Time

You have at least a couple weeks until your taxes are due, but that doesn’t mean it’s a good idea to leave them until the last minute. You won’t actually save yourself any time, so get them done now while there’s no pressure.

Set aside a couple days, make some coffee and put on some music. If you commit to getting your taxes done without a strict deadline then there shouldn’t really be any headaches.

2. Organize Expenses

First, bookmark this post and remind yourself to read it again in a couple months. Heck, you should be organizing your expenses throughout the year. Sticking with it on an ongoing basis will make the task of completing your taxes at the end of the year a lot simpler.

We work with a lot of clients who own their own business or work on a subcontracting basis, so there’s often a lot of extra stipulations when it comes to declaring your income.

The best way to stay organized? At the end of every month, separate and collect your personal receipts and your business expenses. Whether it’s a folder, big yellow envelopes or an old shoebox, it doesn’t matter - start organizing your expenses and don’t stop.

3. Free Apps

An easy way to stay organized? Let technology do it for you.

Apps like Expensify and Shoeboxed let you take pictures of receipts and submit them to monthly reports you can save online. There are free versions and paid versions if your operation is a little bigger.

Using online technology might be a bit foreign for you, but that’s ok, you can start on a simple plan and work your way up once you get more comfortable. Pretty soon you’ll wonder how you ever got on without technology!

4. Consult a Professional

It’s usually free to consult with a tax manager or accountant, but if you’re running your own company, it’s probably a good idea to get some professional help once you’re organized and ready to file. No one needs a visit from the CRA on their file, especially if your company’s livelihood depends on a clean bill of health from the Canadian government. Besides, the time you can save by hiring a professional will cancel out the investment. Just make sure you get yourself as organized as you can, that way the final bill will be lower.

We’d love to put you in touch with one of our preferred accountants. If you need a hand getting your taxes finished, give us a call!

 

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