TurboTax Review - Is It Still the Best Tax Software?
For nearly 20 years, TurboTax has been synonymous when it comes to tax preparation software.
Gone are the days of paying astronomical fees to an accountant to file your taxes. TurboTax has consistently made tax filing as simple as possible for the average consumer.
Owned by financial software company Intuit, TurboTax states it’s committed to helping people navigate through tax season. It has been a top choice as millions of taxpayers already file with TurboTax each year.
There are now many alternative software choices for filing your taxes, so Intuit has had to stay on top of their game to deliver the best user experience.
With new and enhanced features, and easy to use interface, is TurboTax still the best tax software in 2020?
Let’s find out!
Does TurboTax Offer Free Filing or E-filing?
TurboTax has a partnership with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) which allows free filing for taxpayers who make under $66,000 a year.
TurboTax has four plans for filing your taxes: Free, Deluxe, Premier and Self-Employed.
You can use the Free Edition for simple tax returns, claiming standard deductions and not itemizing, or claiming the most common deductions and credits. The Free Edition allows you to file the following forms, along with the standard 1040 form:
- Form 1040-ES (estimated taxes)
- Form 1040-X (amended returns)
- Form 1095-A (health insurance marketplace statement)
- 1099-DIV (dividends and distribution income)
- 1099-INT (interest income)
- 1099-R (retirement distributions)
- Schedule EIC (earned income tax credit)
- Schedule 8812 (additional child tax credit)
For more complicated tax situations, or for higher earning taxpayers, you’ll need to upgrade to the Deluxe or higher edition. When you start your tax return with TurboTax, it will ask you a few simple questions to determine if you qualify for free filing.
Will I Get The Maximum Refund with TurboTax?
TurboTax states clearly in bold letters that it will get you your biggest possible refund.
It walks you through every income, deduction and credit scenario, calculating on the fly just how much you can qualify for. You can do this through the built-in guided navigation, or go through each step on your own.
TurboTax is backed by a 100% Accurate Calculations Guarantee, and a Money Back Guarantee.
If you get a larger refund or smaller tax due from another tax preparation method, they will refund the amount you paid. TurboTax Online Free Edition customers are entitled to payment of $30.
How Easy is TurboTax to Use?
TurboTax offers the most user-friendly navigation, guides and interface you will find in any tax software.
Once you begin, you are presented with personalized greetings, screenshots of a real live Certified Public Accountant (CPA), and asking you how you feel about filing your taxes.
Topics are provided in a simple card format designed for anyone to be able to understand, and you have the option of a guided navigation, or you can turn that feature off and walk yourself through the process.
There’s a search function if you’re not sure how to complete a certain section, and often TurboTax will contain a direct link to exactly what you need.
TurboTax will automatically complete sections and does all the calculations for you.
You can also import documents either by uploading or taking a photo.
It’s extremely easy to find what you need, and move on to the next section. If you’re a repeat user, the process can’t be quicker.
TuboTax is top-notch and has the best interface that anyone from first time tax filers to veterans will appreciate.
What Platforms Does TurboTax Support?
TurboTax has cross-platform support for most all devices from desktops running Windows or Mac, and mobile support for Android and IOS.
This means you can import documents or data and photos on one device, and pick up where you left off on another device.
The mobile app has the same design as the desktop version, except you can tap and swipe the screen instead of clicking. There’s also extra security via a passcode, fingerprint or face identification, and you can live video chat with a professional if you need help.
What if I Have Questions When Filing My Taxes?
TurboTax has the most comprehensive support of any tax software.
If you don’t see the help you need on the actual screen, you can search for the answer to your question with the search bar or help center.
For more complicated situations, you can also set up a call with a tax professional. Once requested, you generally receive your call back promptly, within 5 minutes. The professionals are very knowledgeable and polite to answer all your questions.
You also have the option of one-way video chat, where you can see who the person is that you’re talking to.
There’s even a feature that allows for screen sharing, so the tax professional can see exactly what your situation may be.
The amount of options and ease of customer support is impressive and currently can’t be matched by other tax software available.
Are There Any Additional Features?
TurboTax offers a list of features and benefits beyond just filing your taxes, which sets it apart from the competitors.
1. The Money Back Guarantee will refund your cost if you’re able to get a larger tax refund from another source. You also have a 60 day money back refund if you’re not totally satisfied with the product.
2. There’s the TurboTax Audit Support Guarantee with year-round audit support from a tax professional. If you are audited, you’ll have one-on-one guidance, answers to your audit questions and help preparing for the audit.
3. If you buy and sell crypto currencies, you can import crypto trading transactions directly into TurboTax, and it does the financial calculations for you.
4. If you’re self-employed, there’s integration with QuickBooks, to automatically import your expenses and it does the calculations for you, including automatically calculating quarterly taxes. If you purchase the Self Employed Edition of TurboTax, you also receive a year’s support of QuickBooks with the purchase!
5. The addition of TurboTax Live, where you can speak directly with a tax professional, is an amazing resource to have.
How Can I Receive My Refund or Make a Payment?
If you’re using a paid version of TurboTax, you have the options of making the payment with credit, debit or prepaid cards. You can also have the purchase price deducted from your federal refund, so there’s no out-of-pocket expense.
There’s many flexible options for receiving your refund with TurboTax.
You can receive it by direct deposit into a checking, savings, brokerage or IRA account.
You can also get it in the mail as a check or on a prepaid Visa debit card.
You can choose to use the refund to buy U.S. savings bonds.
You also have the option to apply it towards next year’s taxes, which shows up as tax credit.
You’ll be able to track your refund once you file with TurboTax. You’ll receive notifications when your return has been submitted and when it’s accepted by the IRS, so you know when it’s on the way.
Whether you are you’re single, married, a homeowner or self-employed, there’s a version of TuboTax catered to your needs.
TurboTax makes you feel educated and confident when filing your taxes, as if you’re the professional.
With the most comprehensive features, a smooth user experience, simple layout, and straightforward language that anyone can understand, there’s no better option out there.
From the simplest to the most complication tax situation, TurboTax will ease you through this tax season, with your maximum refund guaranteed.
While there are many choices for preparing your taxes, the best overall tax software is the long-running king – TurboTax.