It’s tax season and the most important thing that we all can do is be prepared. If you itemize your deductions on your tax return, don’t forget to claim the full deduction for the Washington State Sales Tax.
The IRS provides tables that show how much residents of Washington State can deduct, based on their income and state and local sales tax rates. But the tables aren't the last word—if you purchased a vehicle, boat or airplane, or homebuilding materials you may add the sales tax you paid on these big-ticket item to the amount shown in the IRS table for your state.
These add-on items are easy to overlook, but could make the sales-tax deduction even bigger.
If you forgot the deduction for this year or the last three years you can file an amended return to get your full refund.
Doing your taxes is rarely fun. Here are a few helpful tips to help get you through this tax season:
1. Gather your records…asap! It’s never too early to start gathering any documents or forms you’ll need when filing your taxes: receipts, canceled checks, and other documents that support your income or a deduction you are taking on your return. Also, be on the lookout for W-2s and 1099s, coming soon from your employer.
2. Take your time. Rushing to get your return filed at the last minute increases the chance you will make a mistake.
3. Double-check your return. Mistakes will slow down the processing of your return. In particular, make sure all Social Security Numbers and math calculations are correct as these are the most common errors made.
4. Save time and money by filing your taxes online. TurboTax is a step-by-step online tax-filing system that asks simple questions and automatically places your answers onto IRS-approved forms. TurboTax double-checks your return for accuracy and files it electronically. Direct deposit refunds are typically received in 7-15 days.
5. Consider Direct Deposit. If you elect to have your refund directly deposited into your bank account, you’ll receive it faster than waiting for a check by mail.
6. Relax. There’s no need to panic. We all have to go through this every year. There are plenty of tax resources available for you when you access TurboTax online.