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Turbotax Free Edition

turbotax free editionTurbotax is a very powerful program that is capable of handling tax returns of just about any complexity. You can complete basic returns (that use 1040EZ, 1040A or 1040 forms) for free using the online Turbotax Free Edition. However, because the free edition offers minimal guidance, it should only be used by individuals who have very simple and straightforward returns. Other versions of Turbotax can be used for free at first, but you will be asked to pay for the software if you decide to go ahead and file your return. You can therefore try Turbotax at no risk, and only pay if you are satisfied with the way the software prepares your taxes.

How Easy Is Turbotax to Use?

 

Why Turbotax Is Your Best Bet for Filing Taxes Cheaply

Using Turbotax is easy, reliable, and cost-effective. There are a few instances where it might be best to consult a professional, but in almost all other cases, we recommend using Turbotax for your taxes.

The comparison chart below shows why using Turbotax is superior to other ways of filing taxes.

  Tax Professionals Do-It-Yourself TurboTax
Accuracy High Low High
Time Commitment Low High Low
Hassle Medium High Medium
Price $300 and up Free Free / $49.95

A Guide to Selecting the Right Version of Turbotax

If you are a new user of Turbotax, it might be confusing to figure out which version you should obtain. The most basic versions may lack the features necessary to maximize your refund. On the other hand, deluxe and premiere editions cost more, and may offer a lot more functionality that what is required for generating your return. Use the guidelines below to select the version that is right for you.

Turbotax Federal Free Edition
This edition is appropriate for single individuals with relatively straightforward returns. If you file any of the IRS short forms (1040EZ or 1040A), then the free edition in most cases will be sufficient for you.
Cost: Free

Turbotax Deluxe
The deluxe edition covers the needs of most people, including those who are married, have kids, or own homes. If you have common deductions like medical expenses, mortgage interest deductions, and charitable donations, this is the right edition for you.
Cost: $29.95

Turbotax Premier
This is the ideal solution for people who invest actively, whether it be stocks and bonds, rental properties, or other investment vehicles. This program will help you set up new rental properties and choose the right depreciation plan. In addition, it will track capital gains or losses, including the ability to carry over losses to subsequent years if necessary.
Cost: $49.95

Don't Forget to Complete Forms for Your State

Filing state tax returns is a requirement, and if you neglect to do it, you may find yourself owing sizable taxes later, along with interest and penalties. Fortunately, if you use Turbotax, much of the information you input for your federal return can be carried over to your state return. Afterwards, you will only need to answer a few additional questions to complete your state return.

The software to complete your state return can be purchased after you complete your federal return. The cost varies, but is usually around $30 – $40.

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