The Best Services to Help You Prepare Your Taxes

If you live in a household that has an income, you are required to prepare your taxes and file your taxes every year. If not done so already, it is essential to have a plan to put your tax return together. Many choose to do their taxes using tax preparation software or they do it manually. The benefit of tax preparation services is that you save time, stress. In addition, it will help you to avoid mistakes that put you at risk of having your return gets rejected. Tax preparation services are usually more expensive than doing it through online software or manually. If you have very complex taxes, going to an expert could be a good decision if it is within budget. Here are some of the best tax services:

1. H&R Block

They have a large network of branches that offer several tax preparation options with reasonable pricing. Some specific benefits are their drop-off, in-person, or virtual tax preparation services offered. There are 11,000 locations around the country and pricing that start at $128 for a basic federal return and one state return. Some cons are that there are additional costs perform that can lead to higher prices for people with complex taxes and not all of their preparers are CPAs. H&R Block is well known in the tax preparation industry due to its size and reliability. You have the option to do your taxes yourself with their software. They also offer three full-service tax preparation plans. For the 2019 tax year, they helped to prepare 23 million tax returns. You also have the option to have your taxes done through their new online service. 

For taxes prepared at a physical location, you have two choices. The first option is an in-person tax prep service where you sit in the office or in your home at a computer with a tax pro while your return is completed. The second option is that you can leave your tax papers at a drop-off service and everything is calculated for you. You then just have to come back to sign the final paperwork. Both options start at a price of $69 for basic returns with an additional $59 per state. Another option starting this season is that you have the choice to upload all of your forms for a virtual tax preparation service. You get the full service of a representative without having to go to a physical location. 

2. TurboTax Live

TurboTax Live is an add-on to TurboTax that provides software with a tax professional in order to complete your tax return for you. A pro is having the option to begin your taxes on your own and then upgrade to a professional preparer. There are four pricing tiers that correlate to how complex your return is, and you can have your taxes prepared by a professional without leaving your house. Some cons are that there is no option for in-person support, not all professional preparers are CPAs, and self-employed taxes with one or more states can be expensive. 

TurboTax is one of the best known, and largest online tax preparation software that ranks highly for their do-it-yourself software. However, it also has a service where tax professionals can do everything for you online. Even if you have already begun your return, you can still get help. For the full-service option, pricing can be between $130 for basic returns to $290 for complex returns. There is also an additional fee for state taxes and multiple forms. To upgrade from the software, pricing can be between $100 and $260. This is on top of software costs that can be between $0 and $120. Since their service is completely online, they are best for tax filers who are more comfortable with using a computer. There is also no drop-off option. However, if you are relatively comfortable with technology, TurboTax is a great and easy-to-navigate option that is price-competitive with other services. 

3. Jackson Hewitt

This service offers three ways to do your taxes with a professional through one of their locations or online. Many of their offices are even located in Walmart stores. Some pros include the 6,000 office locations, 3,000 of them inside Walmart stores. In addition, you can upload or drop off forms to have your taxes. Lastly, appointments and walk-ins are supported. Some cons are that pricing is not always clear and transparent on the website and they have a minimum tax preparation fee of $150 for federal returns. 

They make tax preparation easy. However, as you can have your taxes done while you shop for groceries. Many locations also offer evening and weekend hours so you can get your taxes done in accordance with your busy schedule. You start by uploading your tax forms through their website. However, if this proves to be an issue for you, you can go to a physical location to drop off your documents and return later for a full review session. In-person meetings can be done by appointments or walk-ins and prices vary depending on how many forms need to be completed in order to file your return. Thus, Jackson Hewitt is a great option for people who want an easy tax experience. 

4. KPMG Spark

They are the best service for modern small and mid-size companies who want online tax support from a group of business experts. Some pros include the fact that you can work with a team of tax professionals at a Big Four accounting firm, you can get advanced tax planning support from the team, and you have expertise in complex business tax needs at your fingertips. Some cons are that their pricing could be high for some small businesses as they are more expensive than a basic business tax preparation service. 

KPMG handles taxes and audits for Fortune 500 companies, which makes them reliable as a service to help smaller companies. They also offer full-service online bookkeeping and tax account services. Business owners can choose to participate in these services in order to streamline tax prep. Another option is for them to choose services a la carte. Owners will have to contact KPMG in order to get a quote on how much the return could be based on its complexity and the number of forms that need to be filled out.

Businesses can also contact their assigned team through phone, text, or email. If you log in to their web portal, you can get tax information 24/7.  Pricing is done at a monthly rate with a flare rate starting at $195 per month. There are no added hourly fees or consultation charges, however. Your team also pulls in business transaction data directly from your bank to its software. This service could be more than what your business needs, but their expertise makes them a great option for small and mid-size businesses that are growing.


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