Originally Posted by JoeWras
I even use the fill-able PDF files available from the IRS, and updating those several times (and calculating by hand, or transferring from my shadow spreadsheet) is a pain.
I really have no desire to do my taxes by hand. Tax software is well worth it.
Yes, but I wish there was an in-between option. The tax SW has become too 'black box' for me at times. I recently wanted to verify something, I knew I should be all in the 15% bracket at this point, so I changed an input by $200, expecting a $30 change in tax. Nope!
Now, try to find out why. It was really, really hard. There is a worksheet that it used wasn't in any printouts, it was all calculated internally. That worksheet is just in the Fed's 1040 instructions, I had to download and do it manually to see if the issue was there.
Hmmm, some guy was offering a free spreadsheet that handled a lot of cases, I need to look for that. It's nice to just enter the stuff, I know how to do that, and see the calculation. At least in parallel with the SW.
ETA: Here it is - I have not used it yet, so proceed with caution... https://sites.google.com/site/excel1040/