When you’re a business owner, doing your own taxes feels like a zero sum game where you’re not making money, you’re not growing your business, instead you’re tallying all the money you don’t get to keep.
This is why hiring an accountant is well worth your time and money. Accountants can find the savings you’re missing out on and help you plan for the future. When you hire an accountant, here’s a few things you should bring with you.
Your Social Security Card (& Dependents)
This is just to start, since (assuming you stick with the same accountant), you won’t need to bring this every time.
Your social security card will provide your ID and name as it should appear on your taxes.
Income Related Documents
Depending on what kind of worker you are you will want to make sure you are bringing in plenty of income related documents. A list of these documents include but are not limited to:
- Form W-2 (wage and salary income)
- Form W-2G (gambling winnings)
- Form 1099-A (foreclosure of a home)
- Form 1099-B (sales of stock, bonds, or other invest-ments)
- Form 1099-C (canceled debts)
- Form 1099-DIV (dividends)
- Form 1099-G (state tax refunds and unemployment compensation)
- Form 1099-INT (interest income)
- Form 1099-K (business or rental income processed by third-party networks)
- Form 1099-LTC (benefits received from a long-term care policy)
- Form 1099-MISC (self-employment and other various types of income)
- Form 1099-OID (original issue discount on bonds)
- Form 1099-PATR (patronage dividends)
- Form 1099-Q (distributions from an education savings plan)
- Form 1099-QA (distributions from an ABLE account)
- Form 1099-R (distributions from individual retirement ac-counts, 401(k) plans, and other types of retirement savings plans)
- Form 1099-S (proceeds from the sale of real estate)
- Form 1099-SA (distributions from health savings accounts)
- Form SSA-1099 (Social Security benefits)
- Form RRB-1099 (Railroad retirement benefits)
- Schedule K-1 (income from partnerships, S corporations, estates, or trusts)
Provide documentation of your expenses. Anything that provides a record/proof of all expenses you’re deducting. This is especially pertinent if you run a small business. Some forms you might need:
- Form 1097-BTC (bond tax credit)
- Form 1098 (mortgage interest)
- Form 1098-C (charitable contribution of vehicles)
- Form 1098-E (student loan interest)
- Form 1098-MA (homeowner mortgage payments)
- Form 1098-T (tuition for higher education)
- Business expenses (summarized by type and amount)
- Child care expenses (summarized by provider and amount)
- Gambling losses
- Medical expenses
- Moving expenses
- Personal property tax, such as car registration paid
- Real estate tax bills
- Realized gain/loss report for any stocks, bonds, mutual funds and other capital investments sold during the year
- Receipts or acknowledgment letters for gifts to charity
- Rental expenses (summarized by property, type, and amount)
Most Recent Tax Returns
If you want your accountant to get your finances in order quickly, bring your two most recent tax returns, this’ll give them insight into income to set your expectations for the future.
Documentation of Real Estate Holdings
Your mortgage and any income property documentation will expedite this process. Note that if you started an income property (rental) this year, include documentation of when you started listing your property for rent. You can expense many startup costs so long as the house is livable and listed for rent.
What If I’m Missing a Document?
If you’re missing a document, you can ask your employer to give you a new copy. If you’re missing 1099 contact your client.