Sage Advice

What do you need to know from taxes this year?


While people generally like to think that they have things under control and are organized in many aspects of their lives—at work or at home—that’s certainly not always the case. Life often gets in the way. What would rather do, balance your cheque book or take advantage of a beautiful day and spend it outside with your kids?

However, this can be an issue come tax time. Canadians have until April 30 this year to file their tax returns, and there are almost certainly people who are going to rush in the days leading up to that date. This happens to people handling their taxes personally, as well as small business owners, so everyone needs to know that they’re not alone.

There are a number of tips and tricks those who have waited until the last minute should be aware of in order to do so successfully and start following best practices for next year. What does this crash course in Canadian taxes include?

1. Keep everything in one place.

This might not be helpful in mid-April, but so they start the rest of the year off right, small business owners and consumers alike need to file away their important documents and receipts in a secure, memorable place. A home office or specific filing cabinet might be good for people at home, while the financial department is an obvious choice for a company owner.

2. Make sure that place is secure.

The last thing individuals want to worry about when they’re putting the final touches on their tax returns is whether or not that information is secure. We live in a world where data breaches and stolen identities are no longer rare, so making sure you’re opting for protected bookkeeping software used on a secure network should be chosen over a shoebox. Plus, turning to one of these programs allows you to make sure you’re aware of any tax law or regulation changes.

3. Pay attention to the details.

Keeping detailed notes about purchases, expenses paid, and other financial transactions is really going to pay off in the final days of April. This is one thing a high-quality accounting program can be of great help with. Users can insert notes and attach various documents, keeping even the most seemingly minute details in mind so no surprises arise when they go to file.

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