Most people will have to file a tax return annually. Whether they do it themselves or hire an accountant, understanding the tax system is important especially if they want to save money on their taxes.
But the system can be complicated and unwieldy particularly for those people who have never filed a tax return before or those who find the jargon too complex.
There are a lot of people who struggle with complicated tax forms and associated terms.
So what do you do? Well, to be informed about the tax system is half the battle.
If you understand your tax liability, what deductions you can legally make and cut through all the industry speak you will find the problem is not so big.
To do that you need to read some books, but what are the best books on taxes?
We have found five books that we think will help you with your tax headache and hopefully save you some money.
[amazon fields=”1947588052″ value=”thumb” image_size=”large” image_align =”center”]
Tax Free Wealth is written to give people the opportunity to understand the basics of the tax system and how they can best take advantage of it.
This is not about cheating the system but rather working with it in a strategic way.
The book covers topics like passive income, strategic estate planning, and the four types of income earners, employees, business owners, self-employed people, and investors.
According to the book there are two rules in tax law the first is “it’s your money, not the government’s”. Although you have to pay some of it to the government for roads, defense and schools it’s still your money not theirs.
The second rule is, “the tax law is written primarily to reduce your taxes”. Many may find that hard to believe but the author, Tom Wheelwright is adamant that 99.5% of tax law is written to reduce your taxes.
Complex tax codes and incentives are broken down into easy to understand chapters and the book can be used by anyone regardless of where they live to reduce their tax burden.
- Great for investors, business owners and entrepreneurs who want to increase their wealth
- Clear and easy to understand explanations of complex tax subjects
- Explains how to save on taxes without cheating the system
- Suggested strategies would need professional guidance or only for investors
Also available at: Audible
[amazon fields=”0981454216″ value=”thumb” image_size=”large” image_align =”center”]
Taxes Made Simple really does what it says on the cover, it explains all about taxes in plain English with no jargon.
This includes things like how to calculate your refund, which tax forms to fill in and what tax laws are specific to your state.
The book gives you information on money saving credits and deductions as well as how to ensure that you qualify for them.
If you know absolutely nothing about taxes and want to be able to better understand the laws, codes, incentives and deductions buy this book.
Other topics covered include capital gains and losses, standard deductions versus itemized deductions, and AMT, alternative minimum tax.
Despite the number of topics covered the book is short and succinct.
You will learn which tax forms you need to fill out based on your occupation and personal circumstances and how to tell the difference between deductions and credits.
- Very easy to understand and readable language, little or no jargon
- Explains the basics of simple taxation for those who are unfamiliar with the terms and processes
- Covers a lot in just 100 pages
- Not a substitute for a professional tax accountant
Also available at: Barnes & Noble
[amazon fields=”B07HYCMTKJ” value=”thumb” image_size=”large” image_align =”center”]
Jeff Schnepper has been helping people lower their tax bills for many years.
This guide to paying zero taxes is yet another invaluable resource from him for those trying to save on their tax bill.
This is a readable explanation of how you can use the system legally to pay less tax.
A sampling of the subjects covered are capital gains and dividends, moving and job hunting expenses, IRA and retirement plans.
The range of topics leaves no stone unturned to find a legitimate way to pay less tax or none at all.
There are literally hundreds of ways to save covered in the book including sanctioned deductions, credits, shelters and exemptions.
He also provides some invaluable tips which you will find nowhere else.
You will be able to save the maximum legal amounts on things like investment expenses, mortgages and points, charitable deductions and child and elder care.
- Deals with everything you need to take advantage of the tax laws
- Breaks down complex tax topics into easy to understand language
- Written by a tax professional with decades of experience
- Maybe not for the average taxpayer, more for those in higher tax brackets
Also available at: Books A Million
[amazon fields=”1493040189″ value=”thumb” image_size=”large” image_align =”center”]
This book will not explain complex tax law or help you fill out your tax forms, but it will help all those people who are self-employed or who own businesses.
There are 475 legitimate tax deductions contained in it and Kamoroff guides you through each of them.
For anyone who is in the position of having to file a tax return it is important that they understand all the deductions that they can claim as part of their filing.
While tax law is complicated and precise this book aims to be precise but also helpful and easy to grasp.
The quote on the first page of this book is really the founding principle of what Kamoroff is proclaiming, ‘If you don’t claim it, you don’t get it.
That’s money down the drain for millions of Americans.” The person who said those words was a former IRS commissioner.
So the purpose of this book is to ensure that you clearly understand what it is that you can claim for and deduct legitimately on your tax return.
- Excellent guide to hundreds of deductions
- Author has over 30 years of experience
- Encourages those you can to file their own tax returns
- Does not go into fine detail about deductions, mostly common sense
Also available at: Walmart
[amazon fields=”1119838584″ value=”thumb” image_size=”large” image_align =”center”]
There are over 30 million small businesses in the United States which are an essential part of the country’s economy.
This book helps owners of small businesses to save as much money as possible on their taxes.
It will help you to determine the tax liability of your business and what sort of tax relief you are entitled to down to the smallest dollar amount.
The detail is so good that it even guides you around the IRS form to show you where to put your deductions.
Barbara Weltman is a nationally recognized taxation specialist and brings her expertise to this topic of small business taxes.
The book is filled with planning strategies and tax details to help owners make the best decisions for their small business.
Information included in this book ranges from detailed lists of legitimate expense deductions and tax credits, current tax law, and any future changes to optimize tax planning.
There are checklists to help organize and prepare your filing.
- Detailed overview of small business taxes in plain English
- Written by an acknowledged tax expert
- Guides you on how to prepare and fill in your IRS forms
- It may be a bit heavy for some, works as a reference book
Also available at: Target
Choosing the right book on taxes will depend on your own specific situation and needs.
We’ll take a look at some of the features of these books that you should consider before purchasing one.
Easy To Understand Language
If you are reading a book on taxes you will expect it to have a certain amount of industry specific language and terms.
This is typically called jargon, and it is prolific in all businesses and industries.
However if you are trying to understand a subject you know little about this jargon can make it very difficult if not impossible. This is the case with books on taxes.
The battle of jargon versus plain English is tricky.
On the one hand there are terms that need to be used relating to taxes that not everyone will be familiar with but are essential to the context of the subject.
But the author still needs to get their point across to as wide an audience as possible.
The best books on taxes aimed at those unfamiliar with the jargon will explain the terms that it is necessary to use as plainly as possible.
If a book just sticks to unwieldy tax terms it will only be useful to those who are well versed in the subject and bypass those who may need the advice the most.
Pick a book that you are comfortable with in terms of the style of language that it uses.
How is the book laid out? Some books on taxes can be quite heavy, almost like a reference book with subjects set out in alphabetical order.
This is great if you just need to look something up for definition or clarification.
However, if you need to have a process explained to you then a step by step structure may suit you better.
This would be especially helpful for those who are filing their first tax return and who need some guidance through the process.
Some books even show you where on the IRS forms you need to put your information and details.
Other books go through certain concepts in taxation and then give an example. These features are great for those who are visual learners.
Tax books which have checklists and sample forms are a wonderful way to make sure you don’t miss anything and gives you a chance to have a dry run at filling in your forms.
This helps to take some of the stress out of making a mistake or inserting wrong information.
Using keywords to break down sections can help you quickly find what you need to know such as which category a deduction falls into.
The structure of the book should reflect your needs and how you absorb information.
The readability of a book on taxes may seem like a contradiction in terms but not all tax books are dry and boring.
Some authors inject a little humor into their subject to lighten the tone.
The tone of the book is quite important. Some books will be unabashedly informative but will also strive to be clear and readable. Others will take a tone of guidance and use a series of steps to help you through the process.
On a subject such as taxes the need to be precise is obvious but not all books will do this.
Some authors are trying to sell their services and so will give a generalized overview of the tax process but leave out important details so that you are left in need of professional guidance even after reading the book.
Other authors delve into the history of taxes, deductions and credits. While this may appeal to some in most cases it serves no useful purpose.
People who buy books on taxes want to know how to save money on their taxes and are not particularly interested in history.
When buying books online it is difficult to assess how readable it will be as you will only get a small taste of the text if any at all.
More often than not the main text of the book will not be available to view and sometimes only the foreword is shown.
Level Of Detail
This is something that we have touched on, but bears repeating. Some tax book authors are excellent at explaining the subject and giving good descriptions of topics.
Others give an overview of the topic and do not expand on the information in any meaningful way.
It can be frustrating for the reader who is expecting to be guided and helped through a process.
This is where the selection of your book is most important, choose the book that delivers the level of detail that you need.
Some people may only want to get a grip on the language of taxes so that they understand what their accountant is telling them.
Others want to file their own tax returns and need a greater depth of explanation and guidance.
Who Is The Author?
Look at who the author of the book is and read their biography. Most tax books are written by certified professional accountants (CPA) with a lot of experience.
Some are advocates for small businesses and entrepreneurs. Others are university lecturers and tax specialists.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Is The Best Way To Learn About Taxes?
The best way to learn about taxes is by reading books on the subject. You will need to learn about tax codes and filing requirements for your specific situation and location.
Find books that suit your reading style and the level of detail that you want to have.
You can also use online resources to get information on taxes but choose your sources carefully and double check things you are not sure about.
Can I Practice Doing My Own Taxes?
To make sure you file your tax return correctly especially if it is your first time you can do a practice return before the real thing.
The IRS offers free online practice tax forms and there are many other sources online for doing a practice tax return.
You can print out the forms and have a go at filling them out. When you’re confident you are doing it correctly you can file your actual return.
What Should I Not Forget About My Taxes?
Make sure that your social security number on your tax return is correct. According to the IRS this is one of the most common mistakes on a tax form.
A lot of information is required on your tax return, so it is easy to miss something but just remember to review and double-check your information before filing.
What Is The Most Beneficial Way To File Taxes?
There are three ways to file a tax return. Do it yourself with a calculator and paper forms, use an online tax software that does the calculations for you or hire a certified professional accountant.
The most beneficial way for you will depend on your individual circumstances and whether your tax situation is simple or complicated.
It also depends on how much time you have and how involved you want to be in the process.
There are a lot of books on taxes available today either online or in bookstores. The problem is always that there is so much choice out there that it is difficult to choose just one.
We hope you will be able to find the book you are looking for and that is right for you with the help of our guide to the best books on taxes.