While I'm not advocating that you plan and organize every minute of your life, there are undoubtedly several advantages to doing your taxes ahead of time. Here are a few reasons why you should get it over and done with when tax season begins.
Motivation to Get Your Taxes Done When Season Opens
1. Paying Penalties is Pointless
Unless you’re one of the few who needn’t worry about the state of your bank balance, I’ll bet you’ve become more and more aware of where and how you’re spending money these days. With the cost of living escalating faster than our wallets can keep up, the last thing you want to do is throw good money after bad, paying unnecessary penalties and / or interest on your taxes. SARS has become exceptionally strict and they’re quick to apply penalties on late submissions (even by just a day!) so if you’re pushing on deadline, you’re taking a risk. My Grandfather always said, “Look after the pennies and the pounds will look after themselves”. Even if the penalty or interest doesn’t amount to all that much, it’s still ‘pennies’ that could be spent elsewhere.
2. You’ll Get Paid Your Refund Quicker
Who’s going to say “no thanks” to a refund from SARS in the middle of the year? No-one I know, for sure. It’s like Christmas in July! At the beginning of the tax season, SARS are far quicker to process payments. If your assessment comes up in your favour and you’re due a refund, it usually lands in your bank account within 2 – 3 days of completion. (Do remember that this may include an audit period – which should also go much quicker at the start of tax season when SARS officials aren’t as swamped with documents.)
3. Tax Practitioners and Professionals Are Booked Up
Thanks to its seasonality, income tax return time for tax practitioners is busy and they’re in high demand! Even if you hand in your tax documents early, it doesn’t mean to say that your practitioner is going to be able to complete your tax that very same day, week – perhaps even month, but naturally the sooner you’re able to get your information in the better. If you leave your tax return too close to the deadline, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a practitioner that doesn’t have a booked-up diary and you may even land up paying premium rates for a rush job.
For tax return assistance and quotations
Join the HM Accounting Client Waitlist for Individual tax submissions, HM Accounting
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