Last year I posted a rant on the declining value of Turbotax and Quicken. I just finished filing my taxes for the 2008 tax year and thought I’d write a quick follow up after sticking to my guns for the 2008 year.
- I dropped Quicken altogether. I switched to an Open Source Free program called GnuCash. This might not be for everyone, but for me personally, I love it. You can review yourself some of the GnuCash features if you like. I personally switched because of the way I was able to do Budgeting with GnuCash.
- I dropped Turbotax this year too. A quick Google search before I started doing my taxes yielded a number of online tax services. The highest rated were Taxact and TurboTax. Because I had my previous years data in TurboTax, I went ahead and entered this year’s data. Then, I entered all my information into Taxact. I was pleasantly surprised that the numbers came out exactly the same. (They should, the forms are standard and it’s all just math basically.)
So Taxact costs $16.95 for Federal + State and TurboTax costs ~$64.50. I will admit that some of the interface issues that TurboTax offers are a little nicer than Taxact, but for me, I’ll use the extra ~$50 somewhere else.
I’ve been using Kiplinger’s Tax Cut for many years, and they keep me in by importing all my stuff, especially depreciation schedules, from year to year. It has started to get expensive, too. Some years ago, the program was nearly free after rebates. Now, it is about $30 if you get the rebate from Office Depot, or Office Max, i always get them confused. That includes a free federal e-file and state return with e-file.
I’m not comfortable with a web program, who KNOWS where all that data goes?