Get Motivated: (Whispers) Did You Finish Your Taxes?

Okay, so maybe I’m a little late asking this question, but I am curious… did you get your taxes done? It’s April 15th and Uncle Sam — who already knows how much you’ve earned last year as well as how money you owe or will be getting back — wants to know did you take the time to tell him again about your earnings. And not risk disturbing the restless giant that is the IRS, I want to make sure you’re on “its” good side as far as timelines.

Listen, I procrastinated too this year. I really dragged my ass when it came to filing my taxes, but once I started I was happy to have gotten it over with. Now, I’ll just wait to for my state return to be deposited in my savings account, which I’ve also nicknamed “Dream Home Fund”. And I’ll wait to see if I’ll get my measly federal return or will William D. Ford of the Department of Education apply it to my stagnant student loan bill.

Exciting things when it comes to taxes.

Point being, I hope you finished filing your taxes. The idea of requesting a an extension doesn’t sound fun. It sounds more like pulling off a band aid really slowly.

This Week’s Goal: File Taxes

This week, I set a goal that was very mandatory for myself. Filing my taxes. In fact, I’ve already completed this goal as of this past Monday so I’m happy to say that it’s off my list.

However, this time around filing my taxes was a little different as it was the first time I would be claiming my notary business. And to be honest, I procrastinated. Beforehand, I was a simple 1040 or 1040EZ preparer. I would just have to plug in the numbers from my W-4, my 1098-E and thanks to the higher interest I earn with my Ally savings account, 1095-INT. All of these documents made it very easy for to complete my taxes in about 20 minutes or less. But having a part time business (side hustle), I had to add a whole new process to calculating my extra earnings.

I had to record my apartment as overhead and make sure I deducted the right amount of space for my business (300 sq. ft.). I had to calculate the my phone usage as a business expense. And I’m on a family plan. I had go through and all my notarizations for 2018 and the travel expenses (Uber) to conduct my notarizations. Yeah, this year’s taxes was much more tedious. I lot more work than I’ve done in the past.

But I’m glad I got it done before the deadline. And although I could’ve requested an extension, there was no logical reason why I needed to. Other than I had procrastinated so long.

To my fellow side hustlers reporting their income for last year taxes, I know the burden and wish you much success in getting it done.

Monday’s Money Tip: File Your Taxes Today

The best money tip I can offer my fellow side hustlers is file your taxes today!  The IRS is officially open and is accepting filings.   And if you typically receive a refund, then there is no logical reason for you to wait to get yo’ money, honey!

Okay, let me take it down a notch.

If you file your taxes electronically with the IRS today, you should expect to get your refund in about three weeks.  I’ve learned, much of the time, it’s a little sooner than that.  And that’s good.  Because February’s a short month.   And for all us hourly employees, are checks from our full time jobs are not going to be as stocky as they would be if there were 30 or 31 days in February.  So, getting your money now will help cover the cost of March’s rent and get you back on track — in case you weren’t — with paying all your bills on time and in full.

Now, I’m happy to say that I’ve estimated my tax refund a few times throughout January (like a dozen, really) and I’ll be getting the best refund I’ve EVER received.  Yes!  But, I’m an adult and I want t make sure I am as responsible with my government windfall as I can possibly be.  So, 67% of my refund will be going into two separate savings accounts: my Dream Home Fund (self explanatory, right?) and my emergency fund.  A girl’s gotta be ready for those rainy days.  What about the remaining 33%?  It’s going to cover any cost of rent and bills I may be short on given the fact that’s February is a short month.  And to some personal investment for myself.  Gotta be wiling to be a little better than the day before.

Happy filing, Side Hustlers!

Money Tips