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Do You Need A CPA To Prepare Your Tax Return?

Do you really need a CPA to prepare your tax return or should you just do it yourself?  Hey, I don’t mean to cut down on our business by any means, but if you can do your taxes yourself and you don’t mind doing them, then why would you spend money on a CPA?

I’m all about saving money, and sometimes it just does not make sense to hire a CPA to do your taxes.  If your return is so easy, like if you just have a w-2, maybe a savings account, and maybe even if you have a mortgage, doing your tax return with Turbo Tax can be very simple and quick.  Now, however, tax rules can be complex and there are nuances to the various laws, even some of the “simpler” laws.  So, for those people who have an inkling of doubt as to whether or not they should do their own taxes, they ought to seek professional help.

And sometimes, even if you think you have a simple situation, you could be leaving money on the table by not seeking the help of a qualified professional.  This is because in the course of preparing your tax return, certain questions pop up as to additional deductions you might be able to take – you have a rental property?  Did you drive to and from the rental property?  Well, that mileage can be deducted.  Did you drive to doctors appointments?  Those miles are deductible.  Do you have a small home-based business?  Well, you might have a home office deduction.  You see, these are items that are normally overlooked by most individuals when they do their own taxes.

Also think about it this way.  Let’s say it takes you 5-6 hours to sit down, gather your information and do your tax return.  If you could pay someone $300 to take that headache off your hands, would it be worth it?

Another way to think about it – if you pay someone to do your taxes and they mess up, you have someone to go back to to fix it.  If you do it yourself, you only have you to fall back on.

So, while in general you can do your own tax return when it is simple, sometimes it literally pays to have a CPA prepare your tax returns for you.

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