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Friday, April 11, 2014

Taxing Taxes

I don't dislike paying my fair share in taxes.  I really, truly do not.  Now I know I am blessed in several ways, including:

1) I live in a free country (and we all know that freedom isn't free)
2) I have a good job that pay a good wage

...but yet I do find tax time to be, well, taxing.

The reasons are many.

First, I personally end up owing money to the federal government, despite my best efforts to the contrary.  Even this past year, when I did something I've never done before...namely hire someone to do my taxes...I still ended up owing money.  How much?  Well let's just say it was "enough", an amount in total equal to what I paid for my first three cars.  They were not expensive cars, by the way, but the point still stands.  Writing out the check is discouraging, but again, I know I am blessed.  Besides, that's not the most taxing part of the tax equation for me.

Second, what's most taxing for me is the fact that I help others with their own tax returns.  Now before I go any further, I want to note right off the bat that I don't mind doing the work, but it's the pressure that I dislike.  I want to get the returns right, and yet sometimes forms are missing, things need to be researched and other assorted complications arise.  Oh, and I would feel absolutely horrible if there was a mistake.  I suspect that this is part of the cost associated with being a Dad and a Brother.

By the way, despite the fact that I help others with their own tax returns, as noted above this was the first year of my life when I actually hired someone to do my own taxes.  Selling and buying a home, coupled with a few others changes simply made the 2013 return more complicated than I thought I wanted to tackle.  What's more, I was secretly hoping that maybe a paid tax professional would magically find me more money so as to get me to the magical place of breaking even.  Alas, while I was happy with the accountants work, I still owed money.  But, on the good news front, the accountant did tell me that for tax year 2014 the impact of paying mortgage interest will get me to at least break-even, if not better.  We shall see.

In the interim, April 15th can't come soon enough.

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