Sunday, February 21, 2010

A Taxing Weekend

This was another weekend for the dogs. After yesterday's rained out Animal Fair, I decided to take one of my fosters to the bookstore adoption event across town. I was going to leave early but there was a lot of interest in my dog and at the end someone was serious about adopting him. I brought him to their house to make sure they had good fences and that he got along with their other dog and cat. All went well. They didn't even mind when he peed around the backyard...and in the house. He only marked his territory at my house for a day or so (until I got the other male dog who peed everywhere).

After that I picked up one of my old foster dogs who was returned because the people decided they weren't dog people. She is a mellow black lab/chow mix but she steals my dog's treats. She doesn't play much either so I hope she finds a new home soon. Of course, my little foster dog is trying to be dominant and barking his little head off again.

Since it was rainy and cold I decided to start my taxes. I have used H&R Block for the last 2 years so I tried it again. It turns out that they have made all but the very simplest return require an upgrade. The upgrade that I would need for dividends and rental income costs $50. I went through the program just to see how much I would owe and it said $604. That would totally deplete my mobile home renovation fund.

I was talking to my Mom and she said that my sister used TaxAct. I looked at that site 2 years ago and wasn't impressed but they have made some real improvements. Plus, they will still let me use the free version even with dividends and rental income. I put in all of my information again and it said I owe $590. That's better. But then I remembered that I forgot to calculate depreciation for my rental house. I just guessed at the amount because I don't have last years tax records handy yet but I believe that I am not going to owe any taxes after all. That's what I like to hear.

I still need to go through it again and check my numbers but I feel much better. It doesn't look like I'll have to add any months on to my mortgage plan in order to pay my taxes. I also added up my stock and found that it only adds up to $3,645 right now. I was hoping for $4k at least. I'm not going to sell it yet so it still has time to grow. Maybe it will double in the next 6 months. One can always hope.

10 comments:

Over the Cubicle Wall said...

Did you have GM stock? Is there a capital loss deduction because of their bankruptcy or are they still trying to settle with their stock holders?

Daizy said...

Oh yes, I was thinking about that on the way to the adoption event...and then I totally forgot again. I think the stockholders are out in the cold. Maybe I'll get a refund.

Anonymous said...

Go with TaxAct... we've used it for three years now with no problems. It's free, even for our complex return - I'm self-employed and we deduct for a HSA, ect. It walked me through each step of the tax forms, just like H&R Block does. I used H&R Block until they started charging to file a Schedule C, and haven't really noticed a difference between the two software programs. :-) Good luck!

Lizzie said...

I love what you are doing with the dog fostering but I dont think i could take then moving on to other people. Just too stressful worrying if they are looked after properly. And then getting them back and knowing they didnt find a proper new home. All very stressful.

Sorry, I am no help with the taxes. I have done all my families but the online filing system means no need for other software, although i keep the records in excel rather than on paper. Good luck.

Dave said...

I do my own taxes but never traded individual stocks. I have been completing Schedule D (cap gains) every year since 1990, though.

With no W-2 in 2009, thanks to my retirement, my taxes are much easier than they have been in many years. Not working in another state saves me the non-resident form, too, a big PITA.

Daizy said...

Anonymous, I will certainly go with them. I can't believe how much the others charge just for an extra form or 2.

Daizy said...

Lizzie, it helps that I have 3 dogs and not enough time to spend with them. When I find a home that could give them more attention it is easier to let them go. I do feel a bit guilty about my own dog though. It was raining again today which meant no walk for him. Poor guy.

Daizy said...

Dave, the W-2 was the easiest part but I'd gladly trade Schedule D and quit my job instead. The rental house is annoying. I need to keep better records.

Big Sis said...

If you go through IRS.gov, you can click on a bunch of different companies that allow you to freefile. This year even my complicated return was FREE to compute and file because I didn't exceed the income limits. The downside is that even though I bought through the same company last year, since this one was "free", they refused to import last year's tax info. UGH!

Daizy said...

Big Sis, that is bad. Tax Act asked if I had last year's return in pdf format. Unfortunately I couldn't find where I saved it. I found 2006 and 2007. I did find my old paper copy thank goodness. I was beginning to panic a little.

I went through the IRS site in 2006 and that's how I decided on H&R (rip off) Block. No more though!