tell me about turbo tax

Good experineces? Bad ones? Worth it, user friendly? Thanks,

TT Works great. The first year you use it (or any tax program), you won’t see a huge gain in effort over doing it by hand, but in subsequent years when it already knows about your employer, family situation, etc., then yuo’ll find the data entry is greatly reduced.

Having said that, tax programs are gross overkill if you file 1040EZ or 1040A. Even if you file 1040 but only becasue of the mortgage interest deduction, you can still do the job by hand almost as easily as using TT.

It also depends on how math-o-phobe or tax-hating you are. Some people can’t think when confronted with a tax form; their brain freezes. For somebody like that, a tax program can help a bunch. You truly don’t have to know anythng about tax; just answer the simple questions one after the other until it says you’re done.

As I alluded to above, a lot of the value comes from not having to reenter some data from years to year. If every year you move, change jobs, rearrange all your finances, etc., then each year you’ll damn near be starting from scratch.

TT (and probably the other leading programs) have ways to download your tax-related information from many major brokerage / mutual fund companies, payroll companies, etc. So if you have significant investments and/or work for a big employer, you may be able to avoid a large part of the tedious & mistake-prone 1099/W-2 input.

Is it “worth it” as you ask? For me & my 35-page 1040 package, yes. For $50-75 after rebate gimmicks it’s money well spent. For my brother who files 1040EZ, it’d be a total waste of $75 he doesn’t have to spare.

On posting ditto what LSLGuy wrote.

My wife and I have used it about 6 years running. Up 'til now, no complaints. We purchased turbo basic at CostCo or Wal-Mart for about $19 bucks. The last two years we filed electronically and everything was swell. This year we followed the same course, however, when we attempted to file electronically, TT directed us to their website where we found out that they’d be more than happy to file our electronic claim for a mere $30 that they even would take out of our return. How convenient. The wife is mulling over other tax software.

I have used TT for many years (since the late 80’s, I think). It was good when I started and has gotten better every year. When I did it by hand it would take forever because I would go back and change things and those changes would cascade. I would have to do it in pencil till I was through (or thought I was through) then rewrite it in ink. One thing that annoys me is how expensive the state returns are (I have to file two states). I used to do the states by hand, but not since efiling.

Recently I had to file an amended return (not TT’s fault) and it was a very easy process. Just that made it worthwhile.

You do have to remember to print out all your returns so you have a hard copy, something I have not always been good about. Now the program will create a pdf file with all your returns so you can back that up & keep it.

One thing about this software is that they have a hard wired one year development cycle, so they have had many opportunities to get feedback, add features & correct mistakes.

One thing that continues to piss me off about them, however, is their rebate / free software marketing bs. You always need to look around to make sure you are getting the best deal and not getting a lot of crap you don’t want/need. In the past few years they have also introduced a tiered approach, charging you more based on whether you were self employed, had rental properties, etc. The only added value these packages give (as far as I can tell) is more hand holding and help. If this is the first year you are filing with rental properties, it might help, but you don’t need the more expensive package to complete your return. Some of the promo literature doesn’t make that clear.

I pretty much agree with all previous posts, just wanted to weigh in as another satisfied customer. There was one point when doing this year’s taxes that I thought something was really fishy; I thought I was being taxed double on income from one of my employers. But by the time I got through the questionnaire, it was all resolved. It pays to just let it do its thing and trust that the software will catch it at the end.

I would agree with the above, but I find some of the help topics are uneven.

In many areas, TurboTax offers helpful asides like “This situation is uncommon” or “last year you reported zero” or “Remember, don’t enter such and such–there is a different area for you to enter those figures.” But it’s not everywhere. There have been other areas where I wish they provided a little more narrative. Seeking more about the topic in the help function hasn’t yielded a lot of assistance, either.

As someone else has noted, they do solicit feedback from users, and it’s been my impression that they add more explanation each year. There’s hope that what’s sparsely explained one year will be better explained the next.

This was my first year using Turbo Tax. It did almost everything correctly until I tried to file a second state for my wifes early retirement withdrawl. It knew what to do on the federal, but it did not automatically know what to do with it on the second state. I had to carefully read through the tax codes for that state then find the form in turbotax to enter manually. It bugs me that turbo tax didn’t figure this out on its own.

I was always happy with TT. This year especially so. We suffered a major loss this year with a ginat tree destroyed half of our house. I didn’t really think it would mean much at tax time and never really thought about it.

When TurboTax got to the section on personal losses and it quizzed me. When I entered the amount and type of destruction, it just switched over to $0 taxes owever and a 100% refund of taxes paid. It was a very large amount and I certainly wouldn’t have cuaght that if I did it by hand and I can’t guarentee that all tax people would either.

Have used TurboTax almost exclusively since it first came out. One year, because of some special deals, I switched to a competitive product and had a terrible experience. Since then, it’s strictly TT. Works fine and saves a lot of work from entering tax information from year to year (such as carry forward losses).

Since I do all my families and some of their friends tax returns I love especially the part where it carries over the previous year’s information.

I did a rental for my son and a Sch. C for my daughter-in-law for the first time this year and it calculated the depreciation which was great.

The annoying thing is all the attempts to sell you services while you are preparing the return.

If you don’t want to pay the $30.00 to e-file your federal and state and aren’t in a big hurry for your refund, just print the return for free and mail it in. I had to mail in a return this year because of employee business expenses (two F2106’s) and the efile system won’t accept more than one. I mailed them about 11 days ago and they still aren’t on the IRS system. In the old days we used to tell people that it would take about six weeks to get your refund, but I don’t know what the time frame is now. It should be somewhat faster if you choose to have your refund electronically deposited instead of a paper check mailed to you.

This is more suited for the IMHO forum.

I’ve used TT for the last few years, and been a big fan of it. This year, I found its interviews less clear than previous years; it was leading me down a path that suggested I could deduct a ton of money for my home office, which I could never do in previous years. I got scared, and ran to H&R block, where they explained the IRS rules and why I couldn’t deduct those expenses.

Still a really good product, but less “crystal clear” than previous years; maybe they’ve outsourced the programming or something.

Also remember that the price of it is deductible from next year’s taxes!

so if you’re kinda stupid about getting all the deductions you’re entitled to, would this help you sort it out?


If you are going to use TurboTax anyway, and if your adjusted gross income is under $50,000 and over $10,000 you can enter Securetax through the IRS web site and efile your returns for free. It also does multiple states.

I prepared the return on TurboTax first just because I like the program better, and printed it out for my records. Then I had to reenter all the info again in SecureTax, but it was worth it for the free efile. I do multiple family returns so I had to buy TurboTax anyway, so it works for me.

If you’re not in a big hurry for your refund just print out your returns and mail them in. I’m guessing it will take about six weeks for a paper check and somewhat less if you select electronic deposit.

I used TurboTax for quite a few years, but about 3 years ago (IIRC) there was a big controversy about TT installing Spyware/DRM along with their software, so I switched to Tax Cut. I don’t know if TT is still doing that or if the publicity made them quit.


Less happy with TurboTax, a bit happier with TaxCut.

It works great. my big problem with filing manually is making mistakes in transcribing data. So fore me, the fact that TT does all the hard work is nice. However, i had an interesting experience…it asked me if i wanted to take a mileage deduction on my car 9I was self employed for a few months lat year). i did it, and sold the car-somehow i would up with a capital gain! i took away the deduction, and my taxes were quite a bit less. i’m told that mileage deductions can get you into trouble, so I got rid of it.

I live outside of the US in Bogota, Colombia. Before I came here, I always filed my returns electronically, but since then, I cannot file electronically because they don’t allow electronic filing outside the US. But, they do send my refund directly to my bank in the US. Mail from here to the US is not dependable, so I always hold my breath when I send an importand document from here. The best way is to send it by FEDEX or UPS, but that costs about $35. But, all in all, I think TT is a great help for me in preparing my tax return.

I switched for the same reason, and have not had any problems with Tax Cut.

I like TaxCut just as well or better. I used TT for several years, then came the year of the C-Dilla mess / screwed up installations. I wound up getting my money back, and used TaxCut instead. I haven’t had any inclination to go back.