Ask the Readers: Are You Filing Your Own Taxes This Year?

By Ashley Jacobs on 26 February 2013 (Updated 5 March 2013) 112 comments

Editor's Note: Congratulations to Loren, Jennifer, and Jeffrey for winning this week's contest!

It's that time again — tax season! While some people feel confident that they can file their own taxes correctly, other people are more comfortable hiring a tax professional to give them a hand.

Are you filing your own taxes this year? Why or why not? Do you use any programs to help you prepare your taxes?

Tell us if you're filing your own taxes this year and we'll enter you in a drawing to win a $20 Amazon Gift Card!

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Guest's picture
Guest

TurboTax makes it easy after you gather your data

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Jen G.

I filed my own taxes this year. My state taxes were a bit more complicated since I moved across state lines last year, but I'm pretty sure they're correct

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Kimberly Franklin

I've been doing them for the past few years... Don't wanna break tradition.

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Mary Happymommy

I'm filing my own taxes this year as usual.

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Loren

I'll do my own taxes again this year. I'm self-employed and I have investment income.

I've used ezTaxReturn.com the past three years. It costs $39.95, which covers NY taxes as well as the 1040, schedules B, C (2 of 'em), D, SE and form 8880. Helluva deal. Of course, I have to do the keystrokes by myself - consumes about three hours a year...organization really counts here. I usually receive my refunds in a couple weeks' time.

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lostAnnfound

No. We have an accountant that does it for us and has for a few years. I'm self-employed, work from home and the piece of mind we get from having a professional do it is worth the money we pay for it.

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lazboy0284

For the first time ever, I am not. My wife was recently ordained and there is some different tax laws for clergy. Plus she's now considered self-employed, so this way I know if I'm deducting everything I'm able to. I kind of miss not doing it myself, but I did try turbo tax online just to make sure I had all the forms, and this self employment stuff plus being a member of the clergy is just too complicated.

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Betty D.

This year, I used a tax service hoping I qualified for one of the college tuition credits. No good. Next year I'll do my own because it shouldn't be complicated.

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Jennifer Marie

we are filing our own taxes.

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kathleen

I'm doing them myself but asking my CPA friend to look them over.

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Ed

Filed my taxes on January 31 (first day possible) through TurboTax. I've been preparing my own taxes for as long as I have filed.

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Tyler

I have always prepared my taxes myself and did so again this year. I'll be receiving my refund tomorrow!

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Christie

Filing taxes, but the father-in-law is a tax preparer, so he helps us out with our filing for a box of Marshmallow Peeps and a visit from the grandkids. It is a 90 mile drive, but worth it on so many levels! :)

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Nancy

Heavens no, I am not filing my own taxes. Though we are far from wealthy, my husband and I have a CPA do our taxes because we have multiple income streams and I work from home as a freelance writer. Our tax accountant knows the current law and understands us and our situation well. His fee for preparing our tax return is deductible the following year so it's like we get the benefit of his knowledge at little or no cost, and we have confidence that our return is done correctly. We've never been audited but if we ever are, our tax accountant will be invaluable.

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Wendy Welch

I filed my own this year. I used TaxSlayer website.

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Tyler

I have always prepared my taxes myself and did so again this year. I'll be receiving my refund tomorrow!

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Kristine E.

I still haven't decided. Is that bad? :)

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Varun Narula

I didn't file returns on my own this year....

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Buffi

Noooooo....my fiance is a CPA, so I let him handle all of the tax stuff! As long as I make dinner, I can get my taxes done. It's a win/win!

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Stephanie

Yes! Always file our own taxes!

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katie m

My taxes are fairly straight foreward, so I do them myself every year with H&R Block.

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Monica

I used HR Blocks military online program (free to us) to file. Because I used it last year it only took 20 minutes or so to update it.

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Kate

I've always done my own taxes, but 2012 was a good but complicated year -- we got married, bought a house and both moved states. So we'll be having the pros do it this year.

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Benjamin Ortiz

We have used Taxact for several years. We will again this year. Just waiting a bit more because we're uncertain if they've caught up with all of the changes in Tax Code this year...

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Casey

I filed my own takes this year for the first time and was amazed at how uncomplicated it actually was! I have gone to H&R Block locations for the past few years due to having multiple jobs, being in college, and many other forms to make my taxes seem a little too overwhelming to handle on my own. But this year I just used H&R Block's free online federal filing program and it really was easy. I skipped their option to file for state taxes at the end, however, as it was an additional cost of $29.99. I figured I'm already paying taxes, why pay to PAY my taxes? So I went to my state's direct filing website and it was also easier than I expected, just plug in the numbers. I will be doing this method from now on.

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SCL

We are filing our own taxes. I have always filed in on taxact in the past, but my new husband has a preference for turbotax, so we are using that this year. We are almost done. Since we have a little side business, we had to use the upgraded version of the software to get the schedule C.

Guest's picture

Yes, I've already filed!

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Tim Lemke

Yes, I have used TurboTax the last several years and am happy doing it myself. Doing your own taxes is a good way to really see how much money you brought in. It's also a great way to learn about the ways you can save money on your taxes throughout the year.

Would I get a bigger refund if I went to H&R Block or an accountant? I'm not sure. I have had accountants tell me that my tax situation is simple enough that TurboTax should do the job well.

Guest's picture

I do my own taxes. It helps that I'm a professional tax preparer, but I've done my own taxes for years anyway, even before I was a professional tax preparer.

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Ian

I'm preparing my own taxes. I have this tax treaty thing that's not supported by programs and the LendingClub taxes are quite complicated... but I did use the free version of TurboTax to get an idea of the refund I could get.

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Natalie

Yep, I did it with TurboTax. With some investments and my husband doing some self-employed work, it's a little bit more complex, but still manageable with the software.

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Leesa

I filed my family's taxes last Sunday using Turbo Tax Online. For a family using the standard deductions, it's simple and cheap.

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Elizabeth

I love filing my own taxes, with the help of various online filing programs. There is something very satisfying about it for me, though it is much more satisfying when I get a refund!

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Warren M.

File my taxes myself and with the help of Turbo Tax.

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JY Kim

Of course! I've always used software although this year, I switched to TurboTax from TaxCut/H&R Block after reading online reviews.

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Kelli

Yes, we always file our own taxes using TurboTax.

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Brandy Hurrelbrink

I hAve someone do my taxes for me since mine are complicated I have a childcare business ect

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Elena

I am filing my own taxes to save money

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Thrifty Writer

Nope. Ever since my fellow writers pointed out how much better accountants are at write-offs, I've paid an accountant, and it's been worth every penny.

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NJJ

Yes, I'm filing my own taxes as always. For me its cheaper than paying someone for privilege LOL!

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Sarah

Definitely. Even as a "real adult" (read: early twentysomething) my situation is not complex enough to necessitate anything beyond the 1040-EZ form.

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Rusty

Yes, I'm filing my own taxes.

Guest's picture

Nope. don't do taxes anymore.

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Ruth B

I've always filed my own taxes. No reason to change this year.

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Heidi

Absolutely! TurboTax Online is my best friend during tax season.

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Shannon R

I did them on my own, they are pretty simple

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Andy C

I filed my own taxes on January 24th (the day I got my W2s) and they were accepted on January 31st. I got all of my refund money on February 2nd!

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KF

Turbo tax all the way.

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Sara

Doing my own with TurboTax

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Stefanie

Yes! I already e-filed and received my refund. My federal taxes weren't complicated and I easily did them online.

State taxes are another story b/c I am in a domestic partnership, so while the federal gov't doesn't recognize my relationship, my state does, so I have to file jointly on state taxes. And that means my partner and I first have to fill out a fake joint federal form for my state. Its complicated and a pain, but we will do it on our own.

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Happy Love

Yes, we use H&R Block's basic software.

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Lisa

Social Security is my only income so I won't file taxes this year. During my working years I always did my own. It's a fairly simple process and saves tons of money.

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Tabathia B

I plan on doing my on taxes online

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Jamie

Nope, never do them myself. Not only are mine complicated this year, but my mother is a CPA and she lovingly does them for me for free.

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Guest

I am doing my own taxes . . .I figure by the time I get all the paperwork together and put it in a form that will make it easy for an accountant . . .I've done the hard work. It may be that I am being incredibly foolish doing my own taxes - especially not being in the "know" of all the principles governing a flawless tax return. My hope is that I am serving my family better by doing the work myself and saving the money I would be spending. "We the people" should be able to do returns ourselves if it is required for our government to serve us.

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Raina

Yes, I always file my own taxes using freefilefillableforms.com. I'm a single young woman and don't need anything fancy, so I figure I can do everything myself.

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Jen

I'm using Turbo Tax again this year.

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Sebrina

I filed on my own this year. I used TurboTax online to get a preliminary idea of the numbers but then I just went onto the IRS website and downloaded the forms I needed. I was able to file our 5 W-2's and my home business for free using fillable forms and we already received our refund 2 weeks ago! :) Definitely plan to do it this way from here on out.
http://www.mismikadodownthesidewalk.com/2013/02/tax-season-2013.html

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MELISSA HANSSON

My husband and I are still trying to decide if we should hire someone to do our taxes this year, because we bought a house last year. Usually are taxes are EZ.

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Nancypdx

I use Taxact online

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KTB

Absolutely not. We moved to a new state, sold a house, and my husband is now considered self-employed. That's a little too complicated for me to be comfortable taking responsibility, so we enlisted professionals. It's already totally worth it, in my book!!

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Joan

Yes, I file taxes for myself and I use a free file through the IRS website. I also do taxes for my niece the same free file through the IRS website. This is for both State and Federal taxes. I prepare taxes for father through Quicken and submit his info to an accountant for filing cause he has rental properties. I find the on-line web links at the IRS site work very well.

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Serena

I saved my Christmas gift cards (from Amazon no less!) to buy H&R Block's software. I filed my federal for free using it, and it was super simple. Illinois let me file through their website for free as well, so I have filed and received my refunds already!

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Susan D.

I did my own taxes, using TaxAct. Way less expensive than TurboTax and it gave me the same results. (But then, my returns really aren't that complicated.)

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Amanda N.

I did file our taxes this year using HRBlock online service. It's affordable, fast and since we have both been using it for years, it tracks our past returns in one spot. I'm a huge fan of filing our own taxes!

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Rebecca B. A. R.

My husband did our taxes with the Walmart portal, H&R block free tax service. We'll be getting a little bit back this year that will go to car repairs.

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Nicholas

I have always filed my own taxes.
I started using TaxAct a few years ago since it is cheaper than TurboTax.

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Joan

Yes, I will doing my own again this year using Tax Act. My filing is pretty simple.

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Brenda Faulkner

No, I've been audited before and prefer a tax preparation service!

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Diane

I've filed my own taxes and my son's as well, using Turbo Tax online. I've used them for years now and always been satisfied with the guidance & results. If my taxes were more complex I would pay someone else to do them.

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Guest

Yes, I did my own using TurboTax. I might by a house this year, in which case I will itemize and use a professional for 2013.

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BRB

Already did, used H&R block online and got a discount through the prime card.

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Bethany

Yeah, we'll do turbo tax or something like that.

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Guest

I'll be using HR Block.

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Mario

I started filing my own taxes after discovering TurboTax and realizing just how ridiculously easy it really is. It also helps that I keep extensive records of my spending; I can account for every penny I spent on every day of the entire year.

Hell, it may sound strange, but I'm even beginning to enjoy it a little. I just started my Roth IRA and plan to open a brokerage account later on, so my taxes are going to increase in complexity when I start having to account for capital gains/dividends/etc, but I'm actually excited to see if I have the wits to do it myself.

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John K.

Doing my taxes myself. Using H&R Bloack at Home Deluxe plus State. Lots of work, but saves lots of money!

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Chuck B

I have filed my taxes using Turbo Tax online...with a $20 discount through AAA.

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Trang

Of course! I always file my own taxes. When I accumulate more assets I will probably need professional services but for now it's fairly simple and cheaper to do it on my own.

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julianne

Yes, and I already did them and got my return :)

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Patrick

I am using my CPA again this year. My tax situation is even more complex than usual since I changed jobs and work states. On a normal year, it's too complex for me with my diverse set of investments. This year, I am leaning on my CPA even more.

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Andrea

Used TurboTax to file my own taxes again this year. It was a bit pricey since I had 2 state return to do this year, but definitely worth it. I did it all electronically, and received my refunds last week! I will definitely do it again next year.

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Rona

I do my taxes every year using turbo tax because I just cant see paying someone who is using the same software to do it.

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ronfie

We have always done our own taxes. We used paper and a calculator then switched to Turbo Tax. Five years ago we switched to Tax Act, it's only $18 for the deluxe version with preorder.

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Margaret

Every year I use the TurboTax online free edition to prep my taxes and check for any changes. After I have a healthy idea of what my return should look like I make an appointment with my CPA. I bring all my yearly financial files and my CPA and I review everything. Sometimes she finds things I can't claim that I thought I might and sometimes she finds other items to give me better deductions.

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Aaron

Ours are too complicated this year - gonna outsource to an accountant. :)

Guest's picture

I used to use a program. But my tax situation is so consistent from year to year, it's not worth the money.

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Christy

I'm going to H&R Block to file my taxes. This is my first year ever filing taxes and I don't want to get it wrong. It's also a little complicated with my college tuition, loans, donations, and work. Maybe I will do it online for free next year when it's less complicated.

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TurboTax All The Way Baby

This year, and in the last several years, I've done my own taxes using TurboTax. Very easy to use and covers the gamut of deductions/credits.

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Heather

I've filed my own taxes for the past couple of years. The software available these days makes it pretty easy.

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Catseye

Yes, I filed my own taxes this year, always have. I don't make a lot and don't own property, so it's no big deal for me to do them.

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Gladys

Yes, I'm doing my own taxes.

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ann

Yes! We have done our own for years ever since an accountant friend told us that they use the same tax software that the public buys in stores. Saves a lot of money - can do at my convenience - no gas spent with multiple trips to an accountant when another piece of information is needed. And in the end, if there is an error, the accountant is never held responsible so there's not the safety net paying by a professional that some imagine.

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Lynda

well my sister (the accountant) is... =)

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Liisa

Nope! We have a small business and it seems "safer" to go with a CPA since small business owners doing their own taxes are often a red flag with the IRS. I'd rather have peace of mind and let someone else handle it -- and then write off the expense for next year! :)

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Alissa A

I filed them myself with TurboTax.

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Guest

Yes, we always do our own taxes. We don't have much complicated to handle, so it's fairly easy.

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Dean

I will file my own taxes again this year. I do this every year for my wife and son as well. I use StudioTax. It is a free tax software for Canadian tax filing.

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Garon

Turbotax all the way. Already got my refund.

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Andy Nifong

Unfortunately, yes, doing my own. Schedule C makes it a bit more of a headache.

Guest's picture

Yes I've already filed my taxes online and have received my refund!