1. Right now: Put out three folders or large envelopes and label them “Tax Documents”, “Account Statements” and “Other Stuff”. These folders will hold the plethora of tax-related information that you will begin receiving shortly.
2. Tax Documents: Educate everyone in your household that any mail that says “Tax Documents” goes immediately in this file. No exceptions.
3. Account Statements: Collect all year-end statements that come in the mail in this file. Account statements can be very helpful for double-checking deductible contributions, taxable withdrawals, etc….
4. Other Stuff: Put anything else that is or might be tax-related in this file. Think mortgage statement, real estate tax statement, your last paystub for the year, deductible medical expenses, charitable contributions, other potentially deductible items, and anything that might qualify you for tax credits.
Another thing that you can work on now is the review of your credit card charges and checks/debits for the tax year. The best way to do this is to log in to the website offered by your financial institution and print a summary for the year for each account that you have. Highlight any expenses that are potentially deductible.
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