Traditionally, millions of Americans wait until the final week of the tax deadline to get their paperwork ready and file their returns. And according to the IRS, 20-25% of Americans don’t prepare their returns until two weeks before the April deadline.
There are perks to not waiting until the last minute to get your taxes done. Filing earlier helps you catch potential mistakes on your return, keep your stress levels down, and possibly save you some money.
Here are a few good reasons to file your taxes sooner rather than later.
Stay On Top Of Your Budget
Once you file your taxes, you’ll have a better idea of how much your refund will be—or how much you’ll have to pay back. And if you made more or less income last year, you’ll also need to factor in any tax law changes that may apply to you as well.
By taking care of this earlier, you can adjust, plan, and budget your finances for the rest of the year. You’ll also be in a better position to set money goals, such as paying down debt or saving for retirement.
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Speed Up That Refund
One of the more popular reasons to get your taxes mailed off as soon as you can is so you can access your refund sooner.
If you know you’re getting a refund, you can also file your taxes online and have the funds deposited directly into your bank account. This is a much faster approach to getting your hands on your refund versus waiting for your check to come in the mail.
Optimize Your Return
Filing in mid to late February gives you an ideal amount of time to prepare your tax documents and other financial records correctly. This way, you’ll be able to replace or request other important paperwork, if needed, and still be well ahead of Tax Day.
It’s also good practice to gather all your tax paperwork earlier to save yourself more money. Typically, the more accurate information you provide on your tax return—the more potential you’ll have for a bigger refund.
Avoid The Rush
Sitting down with your accountant or tax professional at the beginning of tax season is best for you and them. By meeting earlier, they’ll be able to pay more attention to your return and spend more time crunching all the numbers. If you put that meeting off until late March or early April (like the majority of tax filers)—chances are their time will be much more limited and they’ll have to hurry through your return.
Starting early will help you beat the crowd and give your tax professional ample time to work through your tax situation.
Keep Your Stress Level Down
These days it’s typical to feel stressed out about money, and that feeling can get even worse during tax season. The dread and uncertainty around whether you’ll get a return or if you’ll owe a lot more than anticipated can cause more anxiety, worry, and self-doubt.
It’s best to get ahead of this and save yourself the angst by making your tax filing a priority. By doing so, you’ll have a stronger sense of relief and will be happier that you didn’t wait until the last minute.
Take Control Of Your Debt
Another nice benefit to filing your taxes early is being able to apply your return toward paying off your debt. If you’re dealing with a lot of debt and are unsure how to work through it, National Debt Relief can help turn things around. Our debt coaches can help you reduce or pay off your debt—for much less than you owe—in as little as 24-48 months.