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View Poll Results: Which Tax Software Do You Intend to Use for 2007 ?
TurboTax 42 51.22%
TaxCut 16 19.51%
TaxAct 17 20.73%
Other Software (comment) 4 4.88%
Don't use Software; Done Manually 3 3.66%
Voters: 82. You may not vote on this poll

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Which Tax Software Do You Use?
Old 01-27-2008, 07:40 AM   #1
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Which Tax Software Do You Use?

Please comment on what you will use for 2007. If I did not list your software/method of preparing taxes, list it in the comments.

Also comment if you are changing software this year.
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Old 01-27-2008, 10:43 AM   #2
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I use an Excel spreadsheet I wrote. But I do have to manually transfer the results to the form.
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Old 01-27-2008, 10:50 AM   #3
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Paper and pencil. I've not been happy with the tax prep software I've tried twice in the past.
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Old 01-27-2008, 10:54 AM   #4
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Those of you that have used the free version of TaxAct... care to comment on it.
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TaxAct
Old 01-27-2008, 01:24 PM   #5
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TaxAct

I'll preface this by noting that my taxes were complicated last year because of some shares in a limited partnership that resulted in some weird pass-through gains.

I started out in TaxCut but became annoyed at the number of places it dumped me into the tax forms and asked me to figure things out for myself. I lost confidence in the results and downloaded the free TaxAct. TaxAct did better, but there was one place in the interview that I didn't understand. I upgraded to the paid version of TaxAct so I could get better documentation and phone support, and ended up calling them. They immediately answered, spoke English, and forwarded me to a tax accountant who straightened me out. I can't remember the issue, but I do remember that I was very happy with the speed and quality of the support.

The interesting part was that at the end of the interview process, the tax bill from TaxAct and TaxCut differed by a few thousand dollars. I spent some time looking through how both programs filled out the forms and was eventually able to understand and reconcile the differences. When both programs agreed, my confidence in the results went way up. For anyone with complicated taxes who is determined not to hire an accountant, I'd highly recommend the two-program approach.

TaxAct lacks some of the polish of TaxCut but I'll probably use it again.

TurboTax is forever off my list, after the episode a few years back where they decided to overwrite your computer's master boot record while silently installing their copy protection. That's just evil.
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Old 01-27-2008, 01:57 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by EngineeringMyFinances View Post
I use an Excel spreadsheet I wrote. But I do have to manually transfer the results to the form.
Cost savings? Just for fun? You do trust commercial software?
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Switching from TaxCut to TaxAct
Old 01-27-2008, 02:19 PM   #7
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Switching from TaxCut to TaxAct

I'm switching this year. I've used TT (too many ads), and preferred TaxCut for many years. Do get a bit annoyed at having to pay for an efile, for what is fundamentally an ISP exercise for H&R Bloch.

Switched to TaxAct for two reasons (initial price, efiling fee). It does a good job, not as nicely packaged as TC. The disadvantage to the free version is the reminders to upgrade. Even at the upgrade price, their product is less expensive than the other two.

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Old 01-27-2008, 04:04 PM   #8
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This is the second year I'll be using TaxCut, because we can get it free (including state filing) through the military. I found it kind of annoying, but easier than pencil and paper, which I had been doing. My mom uses TurboTax, which I liked better when I played around with it. Didn't know about the file over-writing, though.

I wouldn't say I really trust any of them 100%, although I wasn't familiar with TaxAct. That's one of the reasons I didn't like Quicken - too much information floating around.
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Old 01-27-2008, 04:58 PM   #9
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I have used Tax Act since the first year they published it (about 12 years ago). I had used some of the software the old company (Parsons Technology) published. PT went out of business and some of the workers from PT started publishing Tax Act. Works fine and you can do the questions process or jump into the individual forms. Price is right and every couple of years I actually do purchase the program (seems the right thing to do for the people working there). Last year (2006 return) I actually purchased it along with the State return. Learned quickly that the State of Ohio was so simple that I probably wasted the money on the State part, however, I did go on to prepare SIL and Daughters returns, which were FAR more complicated, so the money was well used. They do offer an accuracy guarantee but I have never had occasion to use it.
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Old 01-27-2008, 05:00 PM   #10
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Spanky asked:
Quote:
Cost savings? Just for fun? You do trust commercial software?
I'd say it's a mixture of:
  • cheapness
  • impatience with answering a bunch of questions from commercial software (I don't use Quicken or Money either)
  • wanting to understand the nuts and bolts for planning next year's taxes
I started out doing my taxes with VisiCalc (dating myself, well maybe not because the younger set doesn't know what I'm talking about)

My taxes aren't really that complicated, even though I use more than the short form. I've found that if you fill out the forms in this order
  1. Schedule B
  2. 1040 Side 1
  3. Schedule A
  4. 1040 Side 2
that it flows pretty well. In the past I've also had to fill out Schedule C and lately Form 8606 because of some conversions to Roth. But still the basic order above is a good starting point.
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Old 01-27-2008, 08:17 PM   #11
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I switched from taxcut to TurboTax last year. I think it is a slightly better product.
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Old 01-27-2008, 08:32 PM   #12
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I used Turbo Tax since it was first published. However, this year it looks like it is going to be TaxAct. Why, it is free, and I am taking the standard deduction. So far it will do the job, yet, I think a pencil and paper would also.
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Old 01-27-2008, 08:38 PM   #13
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I did my taxes by hand for 40 years, and have used TurboTax for 2 years. My run-of-the-mill, uncomplicated returns are done just as well by TT as by me (and vice versa).

I admit it. The reason I will use TT this year is the entertainment value! It's fast, stress free, and easy.
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Old 01-27-2008, 08:39 PM   #14
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Using TT for the first time this year. Seems easy enough so far.
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Old 01-27-2008, 08:46 PM   #15
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Standard Taxcut was free for download last year....works for me...Itemize and dont do efile...happy to just mail it in...
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Old 01-27-2008, 08:50 PM   #16
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Quote:
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I switched from taxcut to TurboTax last year. I think it is a slightly better product.
I went the other way, switching from TurboTax to TaxCut, TT was unable to handle my peculiar situation last year, TaxCut handled it correctly the first time through. When I told TT about the problem they ignored my inquiry and refused to refund, I won't be going back. Please note, I was a loyal TT customer for many years prior.

I gave the free version of TaxAct a try a few weeks ago as part of my year-end accounting. I was completely impressed with the free version. Still, it incorrectly calculated one deduction. I am impressed enough to try the free version again in April, but will probably spend the money and go with TaxCut again this year.
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Old 01-28-2008, 03:29 AM   #17
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Will the standard version of Taxcut be offered for free this year?
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Old 01-28-2008, 06:45 AM   #18
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I answered no software, but maybe I should have marked other. I use no tax software, but I did build a spreadsheet that I make minor mods to each year, that basically emulates the yellow pad sheets I use to make when I was getting ready to fill out the tax forms. It allows me to sort all the slips of paper and record the numbers in one place where the simple math is done for me. I even built a little calculator in the corner to do some of the math from the tax forms. I then fill in the paper forms and file by mail. I usually owe them so I'm in no rush to get the money to them, and I certainly don't want to pay for the privilege of making their work easier. When I get all done, I make a PDF of the spreadsheet for soft storage and a printed copy for the file.

Since I FIREd I added a section for estimated taxes to do quarterly tax payments and so I know how much I should move to Roth to max out the 15% bracket.

Jeb
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Old 01-28-2008, 09:56 AM   #19
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I have used TaxCut Premium Federal+State+e-file for several years with excellent results. I start shopping for the best price and this year I obtained the above for about $45 from an Amazon reseller and I had a $10.00 rebate which I mailed off this AM. My return has run from very complex a few years ago to less complex now. but I am quite happy to spend $35.oo to insert the disc. import last year's information, download the latest versions of the Fed (next sch. for Feb 21) and State and as tax information comes in, input it and later e-file with an immediate receipt from the Feds and State and not depend on the US mail and IRS people to process my return.

Regards,

JCT
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Old 01-28-2008, 12:45 PM   #20
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TurboTax is forever off my list, after the episode a few years back where they decided to overwrite your computer's master boot record while silently installing their copy protection. That's just evil.
Oh heck, you're just begging to be treated that way when you run
Windows (not to be inflammatory :-)

I still use TurboTax (on Mac). I WAS thinking of switching, but whichever
one I was thinking of switching to, I read a guy talking about how it tried
to sell him an IRA sposnored by the vendor, and when he said no,
almost missed his IRA deduction entirely. That's pretty evil too !
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