Every year I swallow hard at the thought of completing my tax return. Why?? My returns are up-to-date, and the deadline for the biggie is months away. Alas, I’m whatever the Opposite of a Procrastinator is and—while I’ve truly learned to chill some—I still crave to get stuff wrapped up earlier vs later.
At the same time, there’s only so much one can do on January 14th! Official tax slips for some accounts aren’t even issued until well into March.
All I know is: The earlier I get those forms in, the sooner I start cashing in big time!
So many benefits are linked to one’s tax return:
- reduced or eliminated debt interest
- free or cheap recreation passes
- government cash benefits
- contribution room in an investment account
- post-secondary grants or interest-free loans
- subsidized housing
- reduced medical insurance premiums
For a single person with one source of income and no kids, completing a tax return can be as simple as writing your name on the form, tossing in a single slip, and popping it in the mail. (Ah, those were the days! But, I also had way less money then, so maybe they weren’t…)
For those of us with kids, self-employment, a disability or three in the family, multiple sources of income, transportation logs, or a foot-high pile of medical receipts, it can be involved enough to drive us to drink. Fair enough.
So, as with all things complex, I break it down.
From the file that I’d thrown papers into all year long, I spent 37 minutes sorting the documents into six categories, and then each item within those by date. That’s cool for now. I have a super tidy file to put away until I feel keen on Step 2. I’ll let you know when its time comes.
Image Source: Simply Your Creations