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Top 3 Tax Preparation Software to Consider

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Linsay ThomasGuest Blogger
April 14, 2017 · 2.8k Views
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Now that we’ve started a new year, there’s an important event happening just around the corner: filing our taxes. This may elicit groans from those owing Uncle Sam a ton of money, while others may welcome this event as a way to get some cash back from the government.

In any case, doing your taxes can be nerve-wracking. What if you don’t get it right? What if you forget something?

Fortunately, with the right tax preparation software, doing your taxes is a breeze. Horrible at math? Have no tax background? No problem! All you have to do is follow instructions and the software does all the work for you. This year, Tax Day falls on April 18. That means you’ll want to think about buying your tax software soon, but which one should you choose? Which software is right for your needs? Read on to learn about the top three software choices and the benefits of each.

 

Top 3 Tax Preparation Software to Consider for Tax Season 2017


turbo tax

Many reviewers choose TurboTax as the top tax preparation software. That’s because TurboTax is so simple and intuitive. Everything is so straightforward. Just answer the questions, fill in the required information and watch your refund get bigger and bigger. TurboTax looks for every deduction possible so you don’t have to. This means less stress and fewer headaches.

While the customer support TurboTax offers is generally decent but not the best, the software upped its game this year by upgrading its SmartLook™ feature. This feature allows users to connect to an agent or CPA and share their screen. Users are able to get advice and an unlimited amount of help for free. You can also now schedule appointments. This feature is not available on the Federal Free Edition.

For those who are self-employed, TurboTax has a new feature available this year. Expense Finder connects to your bank account and automatically looks for any transactions that may be considered deductions.

If you use the TurboxTax app, you can take a picture of your W-2 and have the information imported into the return. Many W-2s can be imported with just a few clicks, if your employer is a TurboTax partner.

Do note, however, that TurboTax is the most expensive tax software option available. But if that means that you’ll get more money back as a result, then it’s worth it. If your taxes are simple, then there are some free options to be aware of. If you use the 1040A or 1040EZ forms, then you can file your federal and state taxes for free.

taxact Filing soon? We've teamed up with TurboxTax to offer all DealsPlus members an extra 10% off! Browse from more TurboTax deals below:

 

hr block

If you like having a helping hand guide you along while you do your taxes, then H&R Block is the way to go. When you purchase H&R Block tax software, you can get free in-person assistance at any location in your area. If you’d like help without leaving your home, then H&R Block offers quick and friendly assistance through telephone and chat options.

Like TurboTax, H&R Block is also straightforward and fairly easy to use. However, you can’t skip ahead to certain sections, so getting through everything may take you a while and leave you frustrated as you progress through numerous screens that may not apply to you. H&R Block lacks many of the features that TurboTax has, but it’s also roughly $50 cheaper, so you get what you pay for.

taxact Going with H&R Block? Check out some discount options below:

 

taxact

If you’re looking for an affordable but robust tax software, choose TaxAct. You still get the on-screen step-by-step guidance that TurboTax offers, but TaxAct may not be able to handle more complicated returns. If you have a small business or corporation, opt for TurboTax or H&R Block instead.

The premium edition costs only $55, compared to $140 for TurboTax. However, there are several key differences. E-filing is limited for certain forms, so check before you buy. If your return is fairly simple with minimal deductions, though, then you shouldn’t worry.

Plus, customer support is lackluster and there aren’t any special features that make it stand out. You can, however, access your return for free for up to seven years. In exchange, there’s no audit risk identifier, social media support or automatic W-2 import. But if you’re OK with simple, no-frills software, then TaxAct does this job perfectly. There are numerous types of tax software available. If you have a basic return, then the others may work well for you. However, if your situation is more complex, then you’ll definitely want to consider one of the three listed above.

taxact Filing with TaxAct? Here are several deals and filing options to help you get started:

 

TurboTax, H&R Block, and TaxACT are comprehensive programs that are robust enough to handle every tax situation. Whether you are a freelancer, have rental income or own your own business, the software choices listed here can ensure your taxes are done accurately. As an added bonus, you’ll get every deduction you deserve – without having to use a calculator.


tax software

taxes checklist

 

linsaythomas profile picture
Linsay Thomas is a seasoned writer and editor who has written thousands of articles about topics such as saving money, healthcare, law, pets and education. She hails from California, where she lives with her husband, two children and a menagerie of pets. When she's not writing, she enjoys sports, breeding chocolate Labs and visiting the beach.

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