Reasonably priced tax preparation software that doesn't require me to put my info online?
January 10, 2009 8:08 AM   Subscribe

I need recommendations for consumer tax preparation software, other than TurboTax.

We've used TurboTax for at least a decade. This year, presumably in order to encourage people to use their online versions, they've hiked up the price to almost double the previous cost. We don't have any interest in using the online version, so I'm looking for another program to use.

I found a recommendation for TaxACT, which is appealing price-wise, but I've never heard of it before now. Has anyone used this program, or do you have any other recommendations?

A few requirements: we'll need something that can handle itemized deductions and sales of stock.
posted by elfgirl to Work & Money (6 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
I like Kiplingers Tax Cut, that's what I've used for about the past 5 years. Not sure about this year's prices, though, but they're great, and especially with itemized deductions....
posted by echo0720 at 8:16 AM on January 10, 2009

I used Taxcut in 2005. I just looked at the file and it's very similar in layout and design to Turbo Tax, which I've used the last two years. But you're right about the price change, so I'll probably go back to Taxcut this year too.

I'm sure I first found found out about it from an IRS link for free e-file. If you want to wait until the 16th the IRS should have a large list of approved software that you could browse through.
posted by saffry at 8:22 AM on January 10, 2009

I switched to TaxACT Online from TurboTax Online a few years ago, and have nothing but good things to say about using them. Their software is just as easy to use and is consistent with TurboTax when it comes to deductions/calculations. (It's free to just calculate your refund/extra tax and add deductions, etc. on the online versions of both sites, you only pay if you choose to file from there. So I prepare things on both sites, to compare their calculations, then file using the much cheaper TaxACT.)

So while I haven't used the purchased software itself - being that I do it online - the company TaxACT is certainly reputable in my experience, and they do as good a job with the calculations as TurboTax does.
posted by gemmy at 11:38 AM on January 10, 2009 [1 favorite]

I've been doing my taxes online since I first started working at 16. I've used H&R, TurboTax, etc.

I usually file independently, without many declarations or weird stuff, so I look for the free 1040EZ companies online.

Last year I went through TaxSlayer because the commercial companies started charging so much.

I usually get through it all by just paying to file state taxes and maybe a 2 or 3 dollar fee here and there.
posted by ijoyner at 1:53 PM on January 10, 2009

I completely understand your not wanting to use an online service for your taxes.

We're using H&R Block TaxCut software, and it seems to be OK. It's our third (at least) year using it. They do try pretty hard to get you to use some online feature or other, but it will work with the internet connection disabled.

I'm making a point of paying more attention to the output returns so that I can do it on paper easily next year.

One negative about TaxCut -- you apparently have to buy the super deluxe version to get a State version now, and since my state returns are simple and small, I'm going to just do those manually on paper this year. It's just not worth the hassle anymore.
posted by amtho at 1:55 PM on January 10, 2009

Another vote for TaxAct. I've been using it since '97, downloading and installing the free version on my computer. The nags to upgrade to the Deluxe version are a bit annoying, but that's what you get for free (it's about $8 to file electronically, as I recall.) It's always had all the forms I needed, even with filing for a business we owned at one time.
posted by zinfandel at 8:29 PM on January 10, 2009

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