Post # 1
OK….so you all know we have relatively complicated money, what with us living in different states for part of our marriage, not to mention i get bennies from work regarding that I had like, 8K in graduate tuition paid for. It shows up on my W2 as ‘income” over like $5250 so I think that’s ok
Ok in general they’re just complicated….we decided not to use TurboTax this year.
Did you seek out a professional in the yellow pages or go with H&R Block or what? I don’t even know where to begin. And if you don’t mind me asking, what it’d cost you?
Post # 3
I would not go to H&R Block. I would go to a real CPA firm for your complicated tax return. It will be more expensive but it’s worth it. I saw so many returns messed up by H&R Block and Jackson Hewitt because they don’t have much education or training.
Post # 4
My Fiance is an accountant and he absolutely warns against going somewhere like H&R block. My sister also had a bad experience there, where they screwed up, and she ended up owing the government money. Typically the people there are not accountants. Or at least not professional accountants.
Since you have such a complicated situation, I would take your business to an accounting firm. You should be able to find one in the yellow pages 🙂
Post # 5
I would ask for a personal recommendation from someone you know! I asked co-workers and am much more comfortable with a personal recommendation that stopping by one of the places you’ve never heard of until now because it’s tax season.
Post # 6
So ours were incredibly complicated this year too… With all my jobs, finishing fellowship, job search, marriage, grants, loans etc etc it became overwhelming.
I upgraded from regular H&R Block on line to a premium package where we can meet with an advisor after I enter in all the information. This was the most economical option for us, because it seems that to have a tax preparer do everything is quite expensive. This way we can have someone look over everything and catch any errors, but save money because I’m doing the data entry.
Once I got into it, I realized I did actually know what I was doing… and when I didn’t I just re-read the tax code… so now we just need the preparer to check the whole thing for errors (and I felt really empowered knowing that I could handle such complicated taxes!)
Tee hee… Guess my recommendation isn’t probably what others recommend. I’d definitely listen to AsB… She knows what she’s talking about! In our case, we’re pretty confident in our results, so I felt fine with the package from H&R, but it sounds like buyer beware!
Post # 7
I used to do ours for us, but ours keep getting more complicated. A large portion of my hubby’s department uses the same guy, so he came highly recommended to us and we love him! This is our second year using him, and we plan on never turning back. Oh, and he isn’t nearly as expensive and we originally thought.
ETA: He’s a CPA, so it’s great because he also gives us lots of great financial planning advice! 🙂
Post # 8
Yeah i’m very confused in general. TurboTax was great for my own self last year, but we don’t want to screw it up this year
Oh also I got red flagged in 2008 by the IRS because I claimed myself and then my dad claimed me, so I’m all paranoid I’m on some watch list now and I really don’t want to mess up. But i also have to include extra forms in THIS year’s taxes because of the double-claim in 2008. Yuck.
Post # 9
I get my taxes done by H&R Block. They are really nice and they get done fast.
This year will be my last year getting my taxes done there. FH has a CPA he works with.
Post # 10
I went ot H&R block in the past and they were horrible. If you’re going to go that route I would suggest just doing them online through turbotax. You’re probably smarter than the people they hire at H&R. I know I was dissapointed once I sat through the process with them. I have been doing them myself ever since. If you do need to hire someone – get a real accountant.
Post # 11
We use a private CPA. He does our yearly taxes and then spends about another hour with us discussing our financial planning for the next year. And we get a candy bar at the end of each session with him! Woot!
ETA: I don’t mind divulging cost. It costs us $125/person (so $250 total) for an annual two-hour session including tax preparation, filing, and financial planning. One of my friends was spending almost $200/year for TurboTax and an H&R package because of her complicated tax situation. This year, she’s trying out our guy, and we’re getting a $50 discount for recommending her. 🙂
Post # 12
I’m actually going to someone that my financial advisor recommended. Do you have other friends who you could ask for a recommendation if you didn’t want to us H&R Block? My husband used them before we were married, but his tax return wasn’t all that complicated to begin with.
Post # 13
haha, actually i went to school with someone (here at work, she’s an engineer) who ALSO works at H&R BLock.
She says she is capable (she is also married to a military guy so I know she’s familiar) and she knows a lady who IS a CPA in her building who used to do corporate tax returns
I dunno, you all are saying such bad things about H&R Block!
Post # 14
EJS- I think it depends what package you get from them. They guarantee my return or they’ll pay for all costs incurred for the mistake, but I paid for the premium package. I know that the cheaper packages don’t give the same guarantee… So maybe they use a different “level” of tax professional.
Post # 15
Do you think it’s a bad idea to go to H&R block even if we’re just filing simple, standard deduction returns? I was being cheap and didn’t want to go to an accountant this year and feeling too lazy to do Turbotax for both me and Fiance (Having an MBA I really should be on top of this stuff but…)
Post # 16
I don’t understand why people go to H&R when for us it costs more than a private CPA? That has never made sense to me. I would suggest asking people in your life that you assume have investments/retirement accounts/etc and see where they go. FH and I go through his dad’s CPA.