Never Too Soon to Plan for Tax Day

Tax Day 2013 has come and gone, but it’s never too early to think about planning for next year, especially if you self-prepare your taxes.

Fortunately, with the help of personal finance and organizational apps, you can organize receipts and keep track of deductions and donations, while limiting your need to keep a drawer full of papers.

Make a habit of tracking your receipts as soon as you get them. For example, the Shoeboxed Receipt Tracker app can help you get organized while eliminating the clutter receipts create. After downloading the app, snap pictures of your receipts and upload them to Shoeboxed, which will file them into the appropriate categories. The app also archives receipts by date.

Maximize your deductions by familiarizing yourself ahead of time with the guidelines. If you’re confused about what qualifies as a deduction, the iDeductible app provides information on more than 250 situations that may qualify. It includes tabs for employee, self-employed, personal and investment deductions. Additionally, iDonatedit helps you estimate the value of any items donated based on condition and sends the donation report via email for your records.

When it comes time to file, check out Bloomberg BNA’s Quick Tax Reference app. You’ll have easy access to information on tax rate schedules, standard mileage, standard deductions, personal exemptions and many more tax references.

Avoid the tax scramble in 2014 by planning ahead of time.