Guest Sign UpLoginNew PostSections ₦0What's Up?DownloadsShopChatToolsAdvertise
Join the Publishers' Program. Get paid for writing.
Click here for FOOTBALL LIVE SCORES for ALL matches played today.

Mr A

How to Choose the Right Tax Preparation Software

Understanding the Types of Tax Software

When it comes to selecting the ideal tax preparation software for you, it is essential to understand the different types available in the market. Tax software can generally be divided into the following categories:

  • Free Software: Free tax software is usually designed for simple tax situations, with limited features and guidance. They work well for individuals with no deductions, simple income situations or those who receive income from W-2 wages.
  • Paid Software: Paid tax software offers varying levels of features, support and price points. These options may give you access to expert advice, in-depth tools, and more comprehensive solutions for handling a variety of tax situations.

Consider the Features and Functionality

As you compare different tax software, it is essential to evaluate the features and functions that they provide. Here are some key aspects to consider:

  • User Interface: A user-friendly design and intuitive navigation make it easier for you to use the software and avoid any potential mistakes.
  • Importing Data: A tax software solution that can import previous tax returns, W-2s, and 1099s will simplify the process and save time by reducing manual data entry.
  • Deductions and Credits: The software should be thorough in identifying available deductions and credits, both standard and specialized, to ensure maximum savings.
  • Accuracy Checks: Software that performs accuracy checks, such as identifying errors or missing data, can help ensure the correctness of your tax return.
  • Support for Different Tax Forms: Ensure that the software covers your particular tax situation, whether you need to file a personal return with itemized deductions, a small business owner return or an investment-based return, among others.
  • Online and Offline Access: Depending on your preferences and connectivity, consider if you require a desktop version of the software or if an online (cloud-based) version is more suitable for you.

Evaluate the Customer Support Options

Your chosen tax preparation software should provide you with ample support services in case you need assistance during the tax filing process. Consider the following aspects:

  • Availability of Support Channels: Quality tax software will have a variety of support channels, including phone, email, live chat, and online resources.
  • Response Time: Consider the response time of the customer support, as you may require prompt assistance, especially during tax season.
  • Availability Hours: Look for support options that operate during extended hours, weekends or even 24/7, depending on your needs and available time for tax filing.
  • Expert Assistance: Some tax software offers the option to consult or collaborate with a professional tax preparer or certified public accountant (CPA), which might be useful if you have complex tax situations.

Comparing Costs and Value
While pricing is an essential factor, it is also important to consider the value of the tax software relative to its cost. Keep in mind the following points as you compare the prices of various tax software solutions:

  • Free Options: Assess whether a free tax software option can genuinely address your tax filing needs, as it might be sufficient for simpler tax situations.
  • Price Ranges: The cost of paid tax software can vary significantly, and higher prices do not always equate to better quality. Assess the features, support options, and value for money when comparing various products.
  • Discounts and Promotions: Many tax software providers offer discounts and promotions during the tax season. Look for these opportunities to save on your purchase.
  • Additional Fees: Be cautious of any additional fees that may be associated with the software, such as filing extra forms or paying for audit support.

Security and Data Protection

As tax preparation software deals with highly sensitive and confidential personal and financial information, it is crucial to consider the security and data protection protocols in place. Evaluate the following points:

  • Encryption: Find out if the software uses robust data encryption methods to protect your information from unauthorized access.
  • Secure Storage: Assess the security measures in place for storing your data, especially if the software is cloud-based.
  • Privacy Policy: Review the software provider's privacy policy to ensure that your personal information is not mishandled or shared without your consent.
  • Reputation and Reviews: Look up reviews and testimonials from other users and industry experts to gauge the software's reliability and security track record.
  • Multifactor Authentication: Strong tax software solutions incorporate multifactor authentication, which adds an extra layer of security to prevent unauthorized access to your account.

Ease of Use and Time Investment

Lastly, it is essential to consider the ease of use and the time you are willing to invest in your tax preparation. Evaluate the following aspects:

  • Setup Time: Factor in the time it will take to set up your chosen tax software, including account creation, data import, and familiarization with the interface.
  • Filing Process: Consider how user-friendly the software is for completing and filing your taxes. A lengthy or complex process might cause delays or increase the likelihood of mistakes.
  • Accessibility: Cloud-based software allows you to access and work on your tax returns from different devices and locations. This is a crucial factor if you require remote access or wish to work on your return during your free hours.
  • Time-saving Features: Tax software that offers auto-fill options, data import from previous years, and syncing with bookkeeping or financial apps can save you considerable time during the tax preparation process.


Selecting the right tax preparation software for your needs involves considering several factors such as software types, features, customer support, security, and cost. By carefully evaluating each of these aspects, you will find a software solution that simplifies and streamlines your tax filing process and ensures that you get the best possible outcome on your tax return.

Follow @JalingoHQ on twitter.

Related Topics

Top SectionsSee More


Top Posters This Month (500 Credits)
(See More)