Monday, March 04, 2013

Why should we break our backs stupidly paying tax?

 photo taxes.jpg

If all goes well, by the end of the week, we'll have our taxes done.  I like to do taxes in March.  April is too late for me, and I had an accounting professor tell me once that all the new IRS temp people "cut their teeth" on the returns that are sent in in February, so you have a better chance of being audited if you file then.  Honestly, I very much doubt that there is any truth to that, but I've been doing my taxes during the first two weeks in March for at least ten years, and I'm not going to switch that up now.

Funny thing--I'm an accountant, and I've passed the CPA exam, and yet Eric and I pay around $130-150 each year to have our taxes done.  Why you ask?  Well, believe it or not, it's all because of a little newlywedded miscommunication.

The first time Eric and I filed our taxes together, I had assumed that (being an accountant and all) I would be doing them.  Eric, on the other hand, had assumed that we would be having the Cantwell family CPA do them, just as he had always done.  In our assumptions, neither of us had taken the time to spell it out to one another, so one day, when I was all but finished with our taxes but hadn't yet sent them in, Eric came home with them already done.  As I looked at what the family CPA had done and compared it to my own work, I found that he had saved us around $500 in taxes from what I had been able to do, which was nearly $400 more than his fee.

Talk about a no-brainer!

I've never done my own taxes since.  I do still do all the gathering of forms and receipts, and entering them into the proper categories.  I figure if we do get audited, one of us better have a pretty clear understanding of what we turned in, you know? But as to the actual taxes? Well, nowadays, I leave those to the real professionals.

image courtesy of 401(k)2013

5  points for the name of the song
2 points for the name of the musical

other points awarded by whim


Mom C said...

Oliver, Fagin and the boys, "You've got to pick a pocket or two"

Mom C said...

Our favorite Cedar tax accountant has a new calling. Jim & Jan Wilson will head the new Bakersfield CA mission.

kates said...

Goodness, what a compelling argument for having your taxes done professionally! I very much enjoyed this post! (surely, this deserves a point or two for whim . . . Not that this was my object. . . )

Ryan + Angie said...

I didn't recognize this one even though I just saw Oliver at the Hale Theater in November for my birthday. It was a great show. I loved the theater in a round so much that we just took our kids to Chitty Chitty Bang Bang last month. Fun times! Do stories like this get whim points? :)

Carol said...

Trying for whim points here. Music and lyrics by Lionel Bart. The musical was based on the Charles Dickens classic Oliver Twist.

Thanks for a great memory. Every time I hear anything from Oliver, the song -Who Will Buy pops into my head. That and Oh What a Beautiful Morning from Oklahoma are some of my favorites!

Harmony said...

I've always done my own taxes, with paper forms to begin with (I'm old!), and now online with a little help from TurboTax. I've thought all along that I would get professional help when it got too complicated for me, but so far that hasn't happened. Now I'm wondering how many hundreds of dollars I've missed out on all these years!

Charlotte said...

7 points to mama pajama! Nice work! Another point for knowing the cast members. No points (this time for some reason) for the news about Jim, but I see that as BAD NEWS for all of us. Poor Corry Enterprises! Poor Melissa! Lucky Bakersfield! Seriously, I'm happy for those missionaries, and I'm happy for the church, but not as happy for us.

8 points

Kate: Welcome to the game! 2 newcomer points (which I should have given you for your comment on the last post, but I'm awarding points here first, so here's where you get them), and 1 point for admitting enjoyment of a post that deals with the unenjoyable subject of taxes.

3 points

Angie: 2 points for having seen a live production of this show within the past year. 1 more point for general whimness

3 points

Carol: 1 point for knowing composer/lyricist; 1 point for knowing the book it all comes from. Who will Buy is one of my very favorite songs as well. I especially love the beginning, how it starts all those vendors singing those beautiful melodies.

2 points

Harmony: 1 point for doing taxes on paper back in the olden days (like me) and 1 sympathy point for the "wondering" over lost money.

2 points

Carol said...

I think I should get bonus points for answering, in my mind, today's question with a line from another song/musical. The answer? "It's a hard knock life!" ;-)

Charlotte said...

You got it Carol!

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