There’s one night each year when Nerdy Johnny comes alive. He puts on sweatpants, sits on the floor, gets on his laptop, and surrounds himself in paperwork. He both dreads this night and gets a little bit (okay, very) giddy at the same time. It’s weird. And this night is coming up any day now, as soon as one final W2 arrives in the mail. That’s right — I’m talking about the night Johnny does our taxes.
We’ve been doing our own taxes for eight years running now. And by “we,” I strictly mean Johnny. I just provide moral support and some sort of sugary snack. Each year we wonder whether we’ll take the plunge and hand over our taxes to someone more qualified than either of us, but we’re still holding out for now. And here are a few reasons:
- Our filing is pretty simple. We’re not small business owners, we don’t have any employees, and we don’t do work in more than one state over the course of the year, so it’s pretty straightforward and quick.
- It’s a chance to reconcile our year. That is a direct quote from Johnny… his nerdiness is already kicking into high gear, it seems. But seriously, doing our own taxes is a nice way to look at everything we earned, how much Uncle Sam took from us (ouch!), how much we invested, and any exemptions we can claim.
- It saves us money. Well, this statement depends on whether you’re able to get your biggest refund by filing yourself. In our case, we don’t have any crazy exemptions to sort out, so e-filing is just as effective (and less expensive) than using a real live human to help us.
- Our tax filing software makes it easy. We’ve been using TurboTax for years now, and their software takes all the tax filing jargon and turns it into easy-to-understand steps even we math-challenged folks can understand. It doesn’t take long, and Johnny can always save it and pick up where he left off if Sally spills a can of Diet Coke all over the couch (which has never, EVER happened… twice).
- Since we claim zero exemptions, we know we’re getting a refund. TurboTax keeps a running tally of your money, and it’s fun to watch it grow and grow and grow as you do your taxes. We have a post coming up about why we claim zero exemptions on our taxes.
Which leads us to the good part…
We’re giving away two copies of TurboTax today! It includes one free federal and state preparation and e-file for your 2014 taxes. All you have to do is enter below for a chance to win.
TurboTax + Amazon Prime Promotion
And whether you’re the lucky winner or not, TurboTax is running a sweet promotion until the 15th of this month. We did this promotion last year, so we’re excited they’re doing it again this year. You can put part of your tax refund (in $100 increments) toward an Amazon gift card, and Amazon will give you an additional 10% in credit.
In other words, if you put $500 toward an Amazon gift card, Amazon will give you an additional $50 in credit. If you already use Amazon a ton for everyday purchases (like we do), this is free money! We got a $1000 Amazon gift card last year (which I initially thought was excessive), so we got $100 for free. But let me tell ya… with all the everyday goods we buy on Amazon, the family gifts, and the majority of our Christmas gifts, that $1100 lasted us exactly a year! So we plan to do that amount again this year. Here’s a nifty graphic of how it works:
And now, back to the giveaway! Codes may not be redeemed for cash and are not for resale. The giveaway is for US residents only (which makes sense), and it closes Sunday at midnight ET. Good luck, and happy taxes!