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Video: File away these tax tips

Wednesday, Feb. 5, 2014



MANHATTAN -- Here are some numbers you should remember when it comes to your taxes: 30-40-30.

Elizabeth Kiss is an assistant professor of family studies and human services with a specialization in family resource management at Kansas State University. She says even though your deadline to file taxes is still months away, start planning now and do your taxes early.

"Break it down into steps," Kiss said. "Gather all your paperwork, all your receipts -- anything you're going to need -- and then sit down and do it. Then the day after, review it and submit it.”

If you're getting money back, Kiss says split it 30-40-30. That's 30 percent for paying past debts like credit cards or unpaid utility bills. The 40 percent is for current use, and Kiss suggests spending it on something fun. Finally, 30 percent of your tax refund should be saved for future goals, whether a short-term goal like a summer vacation or a long-term goal of retirement.

Even if you will owe money this year, Kiss encourages people to fill out their tax forms early.

"If you're going to owe, by completing your return early it's an opportunity for you to figure out how you're going to pay for what you owe," Kiss said.

If you are going to owe more than you can afford to pay in a lump sum, Kiss says contact the Internal Revenue Service to work out a payment plan.

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Written by

Lindsey Elliott

At a glance

K-State family resource management specialist provides tips that will make this tax season less stressful.