Taxes: Quick Tips & Free Resources for Women
by Stacy Francis, CFP®, CDFA
I know most of us look forward to tax season as much as a trip to the dentist, but we all have to do it. One of the best ways to overcome anxiety and experience less stress around taxes is to get informed and ask for help from professionals. Women especially have to be informed because we have special tax issues.
- Women tend to live longer than men.
- Women earn less money compared to men.
- Women hold two times as many single home mortgages as those by men.
- Women-owned business have special tax implications.
With all these issues facing women and their taxes, it is crucial to know where you can get help. The good news is that it’s pretty easy to find help with taxes. Aside from finding your own accountant, you have other options. Some of these options include:
- Savvy Ladies’ Helpline – Submit your question and we’ll put you in touch with a tax expert. It’s confidential and 100% FREE.
- Understanding Taxes – An interactive online tax tutorial by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). This program is split into two parts: a) the HOWs of taxes and b) the WHYs of taxes.
- Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) – This program is designed to help those individuals whose incomes are less than $36,000. Another advantage is that VITA has locations in very convenient places such as libraries, schools, shopping malls, community and neighborhood centers, and other locations. You can search for a VITA location near you.
Lastly, keep in mind the following five tips (courtesy SCORE) on how to start tax season by filing taxes correctly:
- Consult an advisor.
- Pay estimated federal and state taxes four times a year.
- Keep good records of both income and expense.
- Ask your tax advisor about special deductions.
- Schedule a tax-tune up at least once a year.
Remember, it’s important you stay ahead of the tax game by being organized and well informed. It will only make your tax season that much easier and (hopefully!) stress-free.
Stacy Francis is president and CEO of Francis Financial, Inc., a fee-only wealth management practice dedicated to investment advisory services for women, couples and those experiencing divorce. She is also the founder of Savvy Ladies®, a nonprofit organization that educates and empowers women to take control of their finances.