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Andy’s Apps: Apps That Help With Your Taxes

by F. Andrew Taylor

Ben Franklin Famously wrote “In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.” The closest thing I’ve found to an app that helps with death is WeCroak, a 99 cent app that reminds you five times a day that you’re going to die. I’ve got aches and pains that remind me of that far more frequently for free, so in this column, I’m focusing on taxes.

Smart Receipts Is an easy way to keep track of Travel and other expenses. You create a report, either for a set period of time or a specific trip and add your expenses and receipts to it. It can break out the taxes for you. The receipts are added by taking a picture and then you can organize by customizable categories. You still have to enter the total manually and there are places to make notes in case the photo of the receipt isn’t self-explanatory. The app does have an Optical Character Recognition function, but it charges for everything beyond the first two.

The app can also track things like mileage. You enter your company’s reimbursement rate, the miles traveled and where you went and the app takes care of the math. When the report is done, it can be output in several formats.

iDonatedit is an app that lets you track your donation of goods to thrift stores and the value you can claim on your taxes based on the item and it’s condition. You can track what was donated and save photos of the items for proof. Unfortunately, it’s only available on Apple products and I could find no app that was equivalent for Android. There were several that looked close, but on deeper investigation they were no longer available or they only offered a small sliver of the features of iDonatedit.

IRS2go is the Internal Revenue Service’s official mobile app. While there are a number of tax filing apps that try to keep up with the changes to regulations, deductions and the other complications of filing your taxes, there’s a certain logic to going right to the source for that info and avoiding any interpretation issues from third parties. The app allows you to check your refund status, make a payment, find free tax preparation assistance from an IRS volunteer income tax assistant local to you, sign up for helpful tax tips, and much more. For example, you can request tax return information and account transcripts. While the app probably won’t offer you any clever tips to reduce your taxes, any information it does offer is straight from the horse’s app.

 

 

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