We're in Full Swing, Baby!
Feb 1, 2012
Okay, any of you who has come into, or called, our office so far this year knows that tax season is in full swing already. Kudos to Mr. Larry and Mrs. Alma for making it look so easy.
Even though we still have 2 1/2 months left of tax season, I can't stress the importance of calling ahead and making an appointment. We've had at least 3 cases already in which clients came in without an appointment, waited around because they thought they would be able to get squeezed in between appointments, but then had to leave (with an appointment for a later date) because we just could not see them that day.
All W-2's and 1099's will be arriving for certain within the next 2 weeks, so it will get a little busier around here, especially after Mardi Gras. Remember that we are open until 8PM on weekdays and until 6PM on Saturdays (in other words, you don't have to come in during peak times). If at all possible, PLEASE MAKE AN APPOINTMENT.
So far, items that seem to take clients by surprise during the interview are: Homeowner's Declaration page (not bringing it in), BP proceeds ("do I have to claim it"--of course!), incomplete documents ("I haven't got all my W-2's yet"--come back when you do); trying to deduct commuting mileage as employee expense ("But last year my tax guy let me take the miles that I drove to from work every day"--pray that you don't get a letter, then), the 1st time homebuyer repayments ("What?! I have to repay that?! But such-and-such doesn't have to repay theirs"--yes, we know, it wasn't fair how they did that); and finally, the fact that we charge extra for adding up receipts.
We expect to add a few receipts when you come in, but when you bring an overstuffed case of paper, a bunch of folders, or one of those accordion binders that won't even close, we hope you understand when we ask you to leave it and tell you that we will charge extra for categorizing and adding them for you. Depending on how much you've brought to us, this extra charge can be a few hundred dollars, so if you can write and add, or have some basic Excel knowledge, you can save yourself some money by adding it and categorizing it yourself (we'll give you the categories when you come in--in fact just pull up the organizer in the "files" link above to see them all).
Another thing people are forgetting and it's a shame if YOU forget since you're reading this on our web site: The coupon for a FREE state return for 1st time clients. See the bright green-lettered "refer a friend" section up in the upper right hand corner of your screen (scroll up until you see the cash)? Click on it, print the coupon and it's as if you just printed up $60 from your computer! Please don't forget to bring it when you come in, as we do not give the discount without the coupon.
Finally, to our bookkeeping clients: please remember that the bookkeepers are not here after hours. Please call or come in during our normal hours 9AM-5PM, M-F to handle any of your needs.
So thanks again for getting us going on what we hope ends up being another great tax season for all of us. Hope to hear from you soon!