Finances & Debt

Make the Most of Your Tax Refund

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It’s no secret that the majority of us do not look forward to doing our taxes, which may explain why so many people file their returns late each year. But you can do some simple things to file your return more accurately and quickly – and look forward to a potentially bigger refund.

How to maximize your tax refund

Collect your tax documents.

There’s no fun in searching for a stray W-2 form or a long-lost receipt the evening before the deadline. Whether you plan on preparing the returns yourself or hiring a tax professional, filing on time means planning ahead and finding a place to organize and store documents like W-2s from your employer(s), interest earned statements and receipts or account statements.

Your federal tax return could be rejected for the smallest errors and unintentional omissions – all which can delay your refund. Take a few minutes to double check your work. Make sure the amounts you’ve indicated add up, use the correct tax table column for your filing status and sign and date the form.

Consider these tax deductions.

You might be surprised at the number of allowable deductions (known as itemized deductions) that can be reported on your federal tax return to reduce the amount of taxable income. These deductions include:

  • Mortgage interest and property taxes
  • 401(k) and Roth IRA Contributions
  • Charitable donations
  • Medical expenses and health savings accounts
  • Child and dependent care expenses
  • Student loan interest
  • Job-related expenses
  • Home office tax deduction

While including these types of personal deductions can increase the potential for a larger refund, consider contacting a tax professional or visit to verify if your deductions are eligible and what limitations or exclusions may exist.

Get your tax refund back faster.

According to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), using IRS e-File is the fastest, safest way to receive your tax refund. When you use e-File, you can even file Form 1040 series tax returns for free.


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