Making New Year’s Resolutions? Why not Include Organizing Your 2016 Tax Information

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Happy New Year!   2017 is here! With the beginning of a new year, many of us are making New Year’s resolutions. Resolutions like losing weight, exercising more, eating healthier and getting organized! And if getting organized is on your list, what better way to start than gathering your needed information to file your 2016 return.

You may be thinking why the hurry—tax returns are not due until April 18th this year.   After 30 years in this business, I have learned that although it seems like plenty of time, the earlier you begin collecting information, the more organized you will be and the more time and money you will save. I have discussed this issue with many of my clients who tend to delay this project. They all agree that the thought of getting this project done is more burdensome than the actual project itself. And by waiting they cause themselves (and their tax professional) even more stress.

 

The IRS Commissioner John Koskinen recently announced that taxpayers should anticipate longer waits for refunds this year. He also said, “For this tax season, it’s more important than ever for taxpayers to plan ahead. “   The IRS will begin accepting tax returns on January 23rd, but warn that any refunds that result from claiming the Earned Income Tax Credit and the Additional Child Tax Credit will not be issued until February 15th.    Tax professionals and tax software will be ready in advance of the January 23rd date so you can be one of the first to file if you have your information ready to go.

If you have a business it is even more important to get organized and file your returns early so you can get 2016 behind you, and move forward with the 2017 year. By getting the 2016 year finalized for the tax return, you can make changes for 2017 that will better equip you to run your business going forward, as well as be aware of where you stand with IRS estimates and taxes. If you wait until September, you may find that you need to make a major change in your withholding or estimates rather than a minor change if done in March or April. You could also incur penalties and interest due to the delay.

In addition, there have also been changes in the due dates of business returns.   Partnerships returns are now due a month earlier on March 15th.  “S” Corporations are still due on March 15th as usual. Why not aim to have your business returns done by the due date rather than extending your return … and possibly your stress?

Happy New Year and Best of Luck in making those resolutions become your new habits!

 

kathi

Kathi Koenig, CPA
Partner – McGowen, Hurst, Clark & Smith, P.C.
p. 515.288.3279
e. kkoenig@mhcspa.com

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A little more about us:
Located in West Des Moines, Iowa with a branch office in Winterset, Iowa, McGowen, Hurst, Clark & Smith, P.C. celebrates 65 years of extending excellent service to our clients, providing them with accounting, auditing, consulting and investment expertise.

Established in 1946, our staff has grown from 3 to 60 employees, making us large enough to provide our clients with a broad base of experience and resources, yet small enough to offer very personalized service—which we feel makes us stand apart from other CPA firms. In addition to the traditional services of Accounting, Tax Preparation, Audit and Business Consulting, MHC&S offers our clients specialized services including Estate Planning, Business Valuations, Cost Segregation Studies, Retirement Planning, QuickBooks Training, Financial Advisory Services, Fraud Detection and Deterrence, Business Succession Planning, Litigation Support and more.

MHC&S is a member of CPAmerica International, Inc., a national association of accounting firms offering membership to only 90 firms throughout the United States. This association offers a wide pool of additional technical expertise to the members firms, as well as continuing professional education necessary to maintain the degree of excellence which MHC&S feels is vital in today’s business environment.

For more information about our firm, please visit our website or check us out on Facebook.

 

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