Rated 4 out of 5
by Aspenpine Finished!
My biggest relief in using TurboTax was not having to constantly go back and review the IRS rules. I feel the program is very thorough in finding all my deductions (and preventing me from doing anything illegal!).
Not having to review the IRS rules and to attempt to translate them was a huge stress reduction. This year was unusual for me because it's my first full year of retirement and I had distributions from retirement accounts.
I missed one little checkbox which resulted in my having to go back and back and back to fix it. I did not see the box for noting that the business I started last year had ended. I couldn't figure out how to get back and got a little stressed about that. However, the tip I got from the forum of users was extremely helpful and once I calmed down and followed those instructions, all was well. It was my fault, but difficult to correct.
I would like to lobby for a discount of TurboTax's fees for retired people. Next year I will do my own taxes to save money (a constant concern for the retired). Your fee was worth the time and stress savings, but I've got to to watch my pennies!
February 10, 2015
Rated 5 out of 5 by khaun69 Great ease of use, good explanations
I paid over $800 last year to a tax attorney, and felt I got no more value than what I received from Turbo Tax, for which I paid for business return preparation complete with audit protection - which all in was roughly $150 (less than 20% the cost of last year). I was already assembling all of the detail and support to file this info, and simply walking through the returns under the Turbo Tax guidance was very simple. The majority of my income is from W2 sources, but home-based businesses were relatively painless to complete. I came back to my forms several times as I waited for various documents (1099s) to be sent to me from brokerages, etc. It was also quite simple and useful to directly sync with the brokerages to get these forms upon their release. Again, I was really happy with how straightforward the process was, with explanation pop-up boxes helping answer questions, along with links to various other resources needed such as IRS pages. I will definitely come back and use again next year, and feel the value is worthwhile. If it's a really complex situation I might want more reliance on a professional, but if you like DIY, this is really empowering.
February 22, 2015
Rated 3 out of 5 by MomLock 2014 TurboTax has become less transparent
TT still has a painful review process. Instead of allowing you to just open and edit the darn pdf, you have to figure out where in the step by step it's not refreshing. Doesn't allow direct entry. For stuff like childcare deduction forms one should be importing the prior year, or entry of relevant data during the initial entry. Instead you have to wait all the way to the end, then it want to fill in what "you" skipped. the review process is still buggy and doesn't correct errors correctly. I really don't like the online version, and don't trust it. On the plus side, the efile was a heckkuva lot faster than in the past. It took me about 2.5 hours to input a return that was nearly identical to prior year, mainly because of the skips and errors.
This has also gotten a great deal more costly for state filing.
Given that the business and state sections are pretty lame, it's better just to do those by hand. This year, for the first time ever, the import of depreciated equipment was perfect. In the past it's the only reason I'd buy this, to ease all those re-calcs, but it was almost never correct. Time saved is mainly going to the post office. and the efile is gratifying.
February 7, 2015
Rated 5 out of 5
by giddyuptaxmule Fourteen years of AWESOME
I have been using Web TurboTax since 2000, and with maybe 1 or 2 exceptions it gets better every year, and this year was NO exception. Probably my favorite design so far. I mean you have to spend 1-4 hours with this thing, you might as well enjoy the way it looks.
Next up the CONTENT, it's to the point, and breaks things down into language you can understand. And if you can't, there's a big search box right there to go look for other answers and explanations. Last but not least, it's super personalized, you only see the information you need, and the software makes sure you know what you need to know about the things that *definitely* impact your tax bill, but the rest of it is optional, read what you want, and does not hold you up from getting on to the next task. Again it's 1-4 HOURS, so attention to details like what is mandatory reading and what isn't makes a BIG difference after a while.
Also I liked how it knows when situations apply to ME (based on my past returns), and in those situations it double-checks when I'm trying to skip a section, or doing something it thinks might come back to bite me.
I can't imagine using anything else for as long as I self-file.
January 31, 2015
Rated 5 out of 5 by ws007 Excellent Software
I work in IT software development (Web Applications) and I think TurboTax may be the best online (web) application I've ever used. It's that good.
The software is not only easy to use, but it's robust:
- the help-text is both easy to find and easy to read
- edge-case scenarios all seem to be addressed
- the overall approach the software takes to guide me through the process is for non-tax professionals or "regular people". Yay!
I've used it for two years now and loved it both years. Prior to that I used a competitor's software and I can easily say there is NO comparison: TurboTax is better than the former by orders of magnitude.
One other small thing: I think the folks TurboTax get how stressful filing taxes can be and how much the average tax-paying citizen feels the system is stacked against them. TurboTax makes me feel like they are doing everything they can to help, and then they stand behind their product and services - even offering built in Audit protection. I really appreciate it. This year I filed jointly with my wife, had to represent stock sales and income/expenses from a Sole Proprietorship... The whole thing was done, with audit defense, in about 2-hours and I assure you I am no tax wiz!
February 15, 2015
Rated 2 out of 5 by TwistD Frustrating if you know what you're doing
Done my taxes for years by hand, I know where to go for certain things and it's just frustrating that you can't go to a certain section of a certain form and work on it. You can't just pull up Sched B, or form 2441 to review it. It's annoying. You have to go through menu after menu and sort through Turbo Taxes vague language. And at no point do you have a one to one comparison with the tax instructions - an even higher point of frustration because I'm trying to answer a question but I don't know which section or form the number will be used in so I CAN'T even really reference the IRS Instructions for help.
I can see why people like it from the 'simplistic' view, but if you're familiar with actually doing paper taxes and you just want to pull up a form to work on it, this really isn't the system for it. It's really frustrating and you can't even view things until the very end review, and the fear of MORE menu's, you just don't want to leave where you're at because it just means 20 more clicks to get back. It's just very difficult to hop around to different sections and work on them.
It did a good job, but it definitely doesn't provide ALL the information one may need for specific sections, and because you can't relate a Turbo Tax question or input to an IRS form question ... it's very difficult to find any additional guidance.
February 1, 2015
Rated 5 out of 5
by ShannonsGirls They are...."Turbo-Tastic"
For the last 15 years I have filed my small business thru a major competitor of yours. And when I went to go file this year it asked me to pull up my tax copies from last year. I naturally clicked the button of whom I normally filed with (of course forgetting I first filed with Turbo Tax last year). When they couldn't locate my taxes I started to worry, then it hit me. I filed online thru Turbo Tax. So I immediately came over here logged in and BOOM everything right there from last year and ready for me this year.
Using your online Turbo Tax I saved $300 last year and another $300 this year. Everything went smoothly and 100% accurately along with your timeline of filing status events. I can't express to you how thankful I am TurboTax.. So stress free easy and allowed me to feel confident and secure that my tax filing preparation, information and completion was a success!!
Thank you again. I promise from this year on out I will never forget again who I filed with... Thank you Turbo Tax
PS: AND IN THIS SHORT TIME, BEFORE I COULD EVEN FINISHING FILLING OUT THIS REVIEW MY TAXES WERE ALREADY SUBMITTED AND ACCEPTED BY IRS. AMAZING... (obviously individual results vary)...
Pics below of myself and with my daughters individually.. ( we parents gotta remember to give a special thanks to not only IRS for the Earned Income Credit, but thank you our children too...LOL)
January 24, 2015
Rated 4 out of 5 by BananaTree Full-time federal employee w/part-time small biz
I have two Fidelity municipal income funds with tax exempt interest. I had difficulty understanding the section regarding how to figure this out. I think examples showing the math for calculating the portion that is taxable by a state, e.g., California, would be helpful here. Each state uses different percentages and each investment fund is balanced differently, but the formula is essentially the same and should include an illustration:
"Take the amount listed as 'tax exempt interest' from any funds listed on your investments tax form under the 'State/Local Tax-Exempt Income' section and compare this with the tax schedule for the state in which you reside.
For example: Let's say your Fidelity Municipal Income Fund has Tax-Exempt interest of $365 and you reside in California. This means that $365 dollars of the fund's interest for the year was not subject to federal tax; however, depending on how the Municipal Income Fund is allocated, a portion of this interest may be subject to California state tax. If you review the Fidelity Web site, you will find that 17 percent of the Fidelity Municipal Income Fund interest is subject to California state tax, therefore, 17 percent of $365 or $62 is the amount you should include as taxable interest. If you have income from more than one tax exempt fund, you will need to calculate the taxable percentage rate for each and add them together to get the total amount of taxable income."
February 21, 2015
Rated 3 out of 5
by Ashleyinvt Its a Give/Take Relationship I suppose
I have used TurboTax for several years. And I have always had a wonderful experience. Even this year, as I have only rated it a 3, I still had a wonderful Experience with them! And was absolutely and completely happy with TurboTax... That is, of course, Until I got to the end of the filing section where you are so close to being finished and they tell you (in regular sized font, right where you can see it,out in the open) that there is a processing fee to use your refund to pay for the other fees for using TurboTax to get your refund. And that there are significantly higher fees this year to file! WHAT? So what is included for the other 2 fees?
However, I think it is important not to overlook the positive aspects of using TurboTax. It is fast, convenient, easy to use, and saves all my information for future returns.
They have a clear form filing process that is both fast and easy to understand. They also have wonderful, knowledgeable and personable staff in their customer service department who have helped me on more than one occasion.
So, while I am not happy about the fees, I still chose to file with them. Mainly because all of my information is stored in their system, and I had already taken the time to enter everything in this year before realizing the cost.
I will be using a different, cheaper service next year. But if you are not a single mother and struggling student and small business owner and want a reliable and remarkable, but expensive service, well, you get what you pay for I suppose. But I cant afford $150+ just to file my taxes!
February 4, 2015
Rated 4 out of 5 by christojb Pretty much does the job
Overall, I am quite happy that I've been using TurboTax for the past 5 years.
It's pretty easy to understand, and walks you through step-by-step (sometimes too much) the questions to answer.
My main complaint is personal. I own a house that is also a duplex, so I rent out one side and live in the other. This means that 1/2 the mortgage interest, 1/2 the homeowners, etc. is deductible for one part of the house. There are, naturally, other expenses deductible only for the rental, and getting through all that using TurboTax's own system of "enter the total and TurboTax will only count 50%" just has not worked as well as it sounds (for me). I've done this several years and now just enter the numbers for the rental myself, remembering only to write off 1/2 of the mortgage interest on "both sides" of my return (rental and my own home). It's a bit laborious and I think TT could do better in this area.
Additionally, I often have to complete my taxes at several different times sitting down, and when I come back it doesn't go back to EXACTLY where I last was. I think this could be fixed. It will go back to the section I was on, sometimes, but then requires me to go through questions I already answered. The steps along the way can sometimes be just a bit tedious.
Overall, I think it works very well for people who use it, and if you know at least half of what you're doing, you can learn the other half. I thought my own personal taxes would be too difficult for me--having the rental expenses AND a personal business in addition to a regular job--but it wasn't and I learned a lot in the process.
If you're the least bit interested in doing your own taxes, I say go for it and learn as you do. Be patient, take your time (don't hit that "send" button until you're really sure you finished--learned that the hard way last year and had to amend) and sit down with a big cup of coffee... LOL
February 15, 2015
Rated 5 out of 5 by nickybonita More Helpful than a Live Person Doing Your Taxes
I love Turbo Tax. My boyfriend and I use it. I not only love doing my own tedious, time consuming itemized taxes that NO tax accountant would want to sit there and sift through for hours, but it educates me on deductions that I didn't know I could claim. I then share the knowledge w/family and friends. I love being informed. We parish from a lack of knowledge. I also like how it gives you a side by side comparison of the previous year so you can see if your numbers are similar or way off, or if you even entered info in that criteria. I know if I did not enter info in one criteria last year, it most likely won't need to be entered this year and I can skip it and move on quickly. I like how fast, easy, and accurate it is. I feel like I have a live person guiding me along. I can stop and go eat and sign back in and it takes me where I left off. My favorite thing is the audit defense at the end. I don't want to be audited, but if I get audited I never have to deal with the IRS, I pay them a fee and they will intervene on my behalf, whoop whoop!
The only thing I don't like is that at the end when I was finally done (thinking I was about to move on to laundry and other personal to do items#, it found a couple errors. I clicked a 'yes' in a box where I guess I was suppose to click a 'no', and I went from receiving a decent refund to owing $900. I've never owed, so this shocked my pantyhose off. It did not give me the choice of keeping my previous answers or accepting my new answers, or going back to my refund/answers before making answer changes. So, I called but never got a call back #yet#. I finally just had to go through the taxes all over again looking at all areas to see why it changed my refund, and where those answers were that I had just changed. After about 30 minutes, I found that stupid mistake of mine and changed my answer to 'no' and there my refund went back to what it was before #a refund vs. owing#.
Overall, I think anyone would be pleased trying TurboTax just once. My mother used a live person the last two years, against my advice, and has since been audited and owes money. I have told her all kinds of itemized expenses she could have claimed #i.e. pest control, security system for home#, etc. She could have received a nice refund, but her situation is such a mess now that she has to have someone fix her tax mess, and she is still going to owe :# Should've listened. She assures me once her tax mess is done that she will use TurboTax.
February 8, 2015