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Written by Mike Piper
TaxAct vs TurboTax vs H&R Block : Features Options and Comparison In 2023
Competition is quite fierce between these heavyweights of the most prominent providers of tax-preparation software’s, so in this article, we take a more in-depth view of whether or H&R Block can offer you the best service and also which tax site gives the biggest refund. Of all the Turbotax competitors in the market we feel Taxact ( see our Taxact Review here for an indepth look intio it ) offers the best alternative view. We outline the pros and cons for both and provide you with what we think is the clear winner between these giants in tax preparation and ask the Question, Is Taxact a good program and is it better than Turbotax. Are you ready? Here are the reviews
Top Tip : All our best TaxAct Promo Code offers are listed here on MyDealsClub
For Information about how to use a Turbotax promo code Click here to get updated deals and discounts
Before we get into the comparisons of these top preforming preparation software lets look at a deal for you so that once you have finished reading you can scroll back to here and click on either of Turbotax or Taxact to get the discounted deals we have prepared for you at MyDealsClub.com so stop looking for cheaper alternative options and get the best , so for 2021 tax year these are the best deals we have for you so click on either to lock in the very best price today. So lets get into the battle because I got all three to test through a few different filing situations.
TurboTax Overview and Review
This is arguably the most common DIY tax software , which has become a household name over the years. Turbo tax rates highly among users as its easy to use and cost effective .It’s also quite appealing that almost every bank offers a discount for Turbotax, an excellent example of this is Chase bank where customers can click a link from their website. We have a full Turbotax review if you wish to get a full in-depth rundown of the tax capabilities and make sure you also see our turbotax.com service codes and deals .
Related : Turbotax Review : Filing Taxes Online
TurboTax is famous for being a helpful program that is user-friendly and simple to understand so in this review we aim to guide you through why you should use Turbotax and compare products to get a better idea of the best one for you. We checked the software application’s track record by preparing three various tax-filing circumstances and running each one through the online tax software program with free tools and calculator, the donation calculator will save you a lot of time and make it easier to locate all deductions available each year. We discovered that TurboTax’s track record is well founded when compared to H&R Block , Taxslayer or credit karma the other big heavyweights in Tax preparation.
If you’re able to itemize, deduct mortgage interest, or have received a 1099-G (State Tax Refund) or a 1099-Misc (Freelance and Independent Contractor Income) you want to be in their most basic plan. Also be check out our Turbotax Deluxe Discount – check out these Tips for Filing Tax Form 1099 for interest payments
individuals who’ve sold any stocks or investments and are required to update the cost-basis data on their Schedule D will automatically be upgraded to the Premier service at the right time. This tier helps you to file a Schedule E in case you receive rental property income. Also be sure to check out our TurboTax Premier Discounts. State fee may apply
Home and Business:
for the self-employed or those who own a small business with miscellaneous expense’s that exceeding $100, you have to upgrade to the highest tier. But if your 1099-Misc expenses are the cellphone, Mileage, and other expenses less than $100, then you can use one of the lower options. State fee may apply after recent tax cuts
$89.99 to $119.99. For most small business owners Turbotax is a great choice and one we have used ourselves
- $149.99 to $179.99. This is a new service Appropriate for all situations, with a remote CPA or IRS Enrolled Agent consultation and on-demand live advice included. Also be sure to check out our turboTax Live Discount for additional savings
Free Federal File
- This is offered and to make it easy to file a Form 1040EZ or Form 1040A. the upgraded or paid version offers the best option for most people who are unsure on what to do
- The free efile plan provides support for 1040EZ and 1040 A , no extra electronic filing fees
- There are four paid plans that range from $59.99 to $179.99 and you can always go with the new Turbotax Live with help from a CPA
- For the free version, State return prep is $0, and $39.99 for the paid versions , choose either option but think download vs online is best for new users
TurboTax Pros And Cons
Pros of TurboTax To Compare
- A guaranteed maximum refund
- CD, online, or downloadable software is available
- It’s the best-selling tax filing software on the market
- Free state and federal e-filing for 1040EZ
- 5 e-files are available and can cover your whole family (typically with download or CD software)
- Fully featured mobile version for both Android and iOS
- Every edition comes with state filing including the student version
- Free assistance with Affordable Health Care Act to calculate penalties and tax credits
- Excellent customer service available through email, telephone, and live chat. Added support for tutorials, user forums, and FAQs section.
- In April 2022 TurboTax launched a free online portal to help people who don’t file taxes get their stimulus check faster
Cons of TurboTax
• Quite expensive
• Added charges for audit defense
a side note on that , did you know that The IRS now audits less than .05 % of all tax paying Americans , they say this amounts to around 1 million people each year so your chances of an audit are extremely low so we question whether this is necessary or is just price gouging on fear.
• Lacks physical locations where you can meet with a tax specialist or file in-house
Every version of TaxAct costs less than TurboTax
Every version of TaxAct costs less than TurboTax , Yes Taxact is cheaper than Turbotax . Take TaxAct Premium, the most costly variation ( driven toward freelancers and entrepreneur), it costs $70 and consists of a single state return, while the comparable variation of TurboTax costs almost $130. And though TaxAct will interrupt you two times for up sells, it consists of some essentials for free– such as online access to your return for seven years– that other rivals provide as expensive add-ons. Note you can always use the taxact customer service phone number if you get stuck for free advice on (319) 536-3571
Top TurboTax Complaints
Longer wait times and customer seems to be the most common complaints when compared to TaxAct. Especially around February as we get closer to the cut off dates for filing as things start to get very bust for tax agents as well. The actual software does not seem to get many complaints as its easy to sue and offers great value for money so that’s a good sign for users of Turbotax.
TurboTax has a huge support knowledge base and very active community of users who are also willing to help answer questions . If you have a paid versions also get real-time help using SmartLook, and this will get you connected to a tax specialist who will run you through and tricky questions and advise you ho to use the software. This is a great feature and well worth paying to have an expert on your team fro a very small price compared to paying an accountant or other professional.
Turbotax Live Compare
TurboTax Live provides you with the Expert Services of a professional tax expert to assist you getting your return 100% correct. If you have concerns or questions associated with your return. When you use TurboTax Live, either an experienced EA (Enrolled Agent), Practicing Attorney or CPA (Certified Public Accountant) will work on reviewing your tax returns and provide you with approval when you can file, making sure that you receive as much money as possible, and to ensure your taxes have been done correctly.
Tax Act Overview and Review
TaxAct’s products are less expensive than competing packages from bigger names like TurboTax or H&R Block. Thats especially ideal especially for people who need advanced tax software, which can run $100 or more elsewhere when you factor in the price of preparing a state return. TaxAct also has a price guarantee too and offers a great cost effective turbotax alternative for most people, which means you pay the listed price when you start your return rather than when you finish and we like that . This might be helpful because, from my experience, tax software prices tend to go up about a month before the filing deadline.
TaxAct’s free version is safe , legit and available only to people who qualify to file the 1040EZ; folks who have to file a 1040A or regular 1040 will need to get one of the paid versions. The paid versions import last year’s TaxAct return. Also use taxactonline to file your returns faster for a better experience.
TaxAct provides several products based on your income tax status. They primarily offer four central plans that you can choose from free, basic, plus, and premium. The free option assists with tax returns, and the service is free of charge when you file for state and federal tax returns. While the free plan of TaxAct comes with a $15 fee when you want to import your last year’s TaxAct return file, it’s quite reasonable considering how crucial it is to get this year’s data correctly.
Its also worth noting that Blucora who owns Taxact set out to restructure its Tax Prep and Software Division in April as parts of its response to coronavirus, It remains to be seen if this will have any negative impact on prices and service for users of the service .
- The free plan offers support for 1040EZ and 1040A
- Taxact filing fees are reasonably priced and not too expensive this year
- There are three paid versions that range from $27 to $51 , get in early to avoid a price increase
- For the free plan, the State return rep is $0 and $37 for the paid versions
Tax Act Pros And Cons
Pros of TaxAct To Compare
- Accuracy guarantee, price lock guarantee, maximum refund pledge, and a satisfaction guarantee.
- 5 e-files and with every purchase of the higher-level download software you get 1 state return
- Free state and federal e-filing for 1040EZ and 1040A
- Mobile versions are available
- Professional audit defense
- Q&A interview guide filters for details about the previous year’s taxes and health insurance
- Provides professional tax products for accountants, CPAs, and other professionals
- Ability to import W-2 forms from the participating institutions, previous year returns, as well as charitable donations.
Cons of TaxAct
• No feature for user forums
• Can only import 1099-B CVS file formats
• No Coupon code
Top TaxAct Complaints
The most common complaint about TaxAct are additional charges .For example they charge you $9.99 to keep your federal tax return available and $20 to keep both federal and state returns viewable into the future , we think that’s just gouging and not something turbotax does. You can however save your returns in hard-copy or pdf after you file but you cant re access them without paying the fee. And if you want to import old returns and direct deposit you now need to pay a fee the upgrade which again is a common complaint of using TaxAct
Tax Act Support
If you need help, TaxAct will also help you connect with a CPA or Enrolled Agent to chat live or on a phone call. They also have Free helpline for users who have subscribed which also makes TaxAct well worth the money . They wont offer any detailed tac advice that will require the use of your own accountant but for the basics its a great thing to know that backup is available.
TaxAct has an online knowledge base similar to Turbotax and this allows users to search for answers about tax issues.However I would say on balance there’s is not anywhere near as good as Turbotax’s
Both TurboTax and TaxAct allow you to use your refund to pay for the fees incurred during tax-prep. However, there’s a fee for that: $39.99 with TurboTax and $25 with TaxAct Plus.
TaxAct has an audit assistance feature that consists of an FAQ page on their website. You also have the option to purchase ‘Audit Defense’ a product offered by a company they partner with; Protection Plus. The coverage includes 3-year audit services for the current year’s return, and a comprehensive resolution and response strategy, assistance with denied credits, state and IRS correspondence, as well as tax fraud and tax debt assistance. The service is also included in their Premium package.
When you get an audit notice, you’ll receive free guidance from tax experts on how to prepare and what to expect. If you want to have someone physically represent you in front of the IRS, you have to buy their Audit Defense product when you file. TurboTax charges $44.99 for it.
H&R Block Overview and Review
H&R Block provides a comprehensive selection of tax preparation services to suit any budget. The cost of working with a tax specialist through document upload is $49, while drop-off and in-office services are $69. There may be extra fees, such as a $44.99 state tax filing cost.
If you simply have W-2 income and/or unemployment money and rent your house, the Free file online version should suffice. You won’t be able to itemise your deductions, but that’s to be expected with a free version. Student deductions are included in H&R Block’s free version, but not in TurboTax’s.
You can itemise everything in the free version, plus the mortgage interest deduction and health savings accounts. It includes stock and other investment transactions, as well as house mortgage interest, charitable donations, and any other itemised deductions if you don’t wish to take the standard deduction. It costs $50 and includes support for most Form 1099s, free tech support, and a “drag and drop” function that allows you to import current and previous-year data for free.
Everything from the Deluxe edition is supported, as well as rental property income and freelance/contractor income under $5,000. You may also use standard monitoring applications to input mileage and other costs. It costs $65, which includes one free state return and $40 for extra state returns. This should be sufficient for freelancers and independent contractors with several 1099s but deductible business costs of less than $5,000, as well as investors who own rental property or have sold shares.
H&R Block’s top-tier online tax preparation service. It’s ideal for self-employed people earning more than $5,000, such as small business owners, partners, and contractors. It has a number of features, including the ability to integrate Uber driver tax information and complete support for typical tax issues encountered by self-employed people. This product costs $80, which includes a state tax return, plus $40 for each subsequent state tax return. The Premium & Business edition, like the Premium version, includes support for rental property owners.
H&R Block Pricing in 2022 Tax Year
H&R Block Pricing
H&R Block Online
Starts at $0
$36.99 per State
Self-Prepared & Assistance
20% Off with Deal
For federal filing, H&R Block’s tax software ranges from $29.95 to $89.95, plus any state expenses.
H&R Block offers four distinct pricing tiers, one of which is completely free (State and Federal filing are both free). H&R Block’s Premium price category is one of the most cost-effective.
H&R Block Pros and Cons
- Professional assistance: H&R Block provides professional assistance, and you can chat or consult with a tax preparer if you have questions while completing the return.
- Online services: While there are numerous H&R Block locations around the nation, you may utilise the online tax software to get expert help and advise on submitting your forms.
- Free filing option: H&R Block’s free filing option is more beneficial than other systems’. Individuals may take advantage of house mortgage interest deductions and gain income tax credits.
- User-friendly navigation: The H&R Block platform is designed so that users can easily navigate through the top menu, making it simple to backtrack and correct any errors
- Accuracy check: Before submitting the return, the programme performs an accuracy check to look for any errors or missed opportunities. Other tax platforms do not offer this option.
- Maximum refund guarantee: If you meet a certain refund threshold from all in-person tax return preparation, H&R Block will give you a refund advance.
- Often have military discounts on offer
H&R Block is up against a lot of competition from online Intuit providers, which run the TurboTax franchise, as well as newcomers like Liberty Tax.
- Not the greatest platform: When you can obtain help, it isn’t the ideal platform if you need some clarifications while filing your taxes. Some terms are not well explained by the platform.
- Low-cost plan: Complex tax concerns are outside the scope of the free and low-cost tax plan bundle. Individuals who prepare their own taxes will benefit the most from it.
- Additional services for a cost: If you want a tax expert to evaluate your returns, you will have to pay an additional fee. If you want an audit report, you’ll have to pay an extra $19.99.
- Design flaws: The H&R Block programme, like Turbo Tax, has design flaws that make it less intuitive.
- Regulations: H&R Block will no longer be able to issue return anticipation loans, which are a source of income for the corporation, due to regulatory scrutiny.
Final Word, Conclusions and Verdict
Which Is Better Taxact , Turbotax or H&R Block ?
In the battle between these top 3 tax preparation software providers the price difference between them starts to be a clear indicator of who is the better option we found. For most people, this is a non-issue, but if you’ve worked in different states with different income taxes, the $37 fee charged by TurboTax per state can add up quick. On the flip side taxact premium cost is $24.95 to $104.90 which is also not cheap.
However, every battle has a clear winner, and this year, we crown TurboTax the winner of tax-prep software in 2023 with H& R Block a close second place based on personal experiences and the experiences of our team. Its reliable ,dependable and not overly expensive and we think the best overall online tax preparation company. If these three options are not really what you are looking for I recommend looking at Quickbooks . MyDealsClub also has exclusive Quickbooks deals for big savings this tax season ahead which also includes self employed Quickbooks .
Satisfaction Guarantee: All three offer money back guarantees if you are not totally satisfied with their tax software but it doe not apply after you print out your return which is good to know.
Which Software Offers The Bigger Refund ?
TurboTax Deluxe is the most popular choice for the biggest refund, has the most standard deductions and is able to get a tax credit for you with the maximum refund. And TurboTax Premier is specifically made for taxpayers who have investments or property assets and will also be able to provide you with a better refund.
For Small business, Which Option Is Better ?
All three planning options can allow you to complete your taxes and maximize deductions at the same time, and side-by-side, they have a great deal of similarities. Both permit you to submit a minimum of one federal e-file at no cost, offer a 100% accuracy guarantee, and give the choice to upload bookkeeping data to boost efficacy. In a $59.99 price point irrespective of company or small business setup, TaxAct is the less expensive choices. This is very true when you’re filing taxes to get an S Corp, C Corp, or Partnership since filing with TurboTax will need the purchase of TurboTax Business at $159.99. And, while it is true that the TaxAct Bundle will probably run $200, in Addition, It includes private federal tax filing Choices
Taxact vs Turbotax Reddit
Today I got an email asking the following : Is there a taxact vs turbotax reddit write up you can point me to ? Im like sure , but you found it and are on it right now . We feel our guide is very comprehensive for most readers and offers a great amount of details you need to decide which of thesetax juggernauts offers you the best return bang for buck .
Also See : Turbotax Service Codes Ofered On Reddit
We encourage you to comment below on your thoughts feelings about these three giants in tax prep to further assist others in making up their minds. Ultimately its your choice ,TurboTax is more expensive sure but if are running multiple returns or need extra special help you will want to go with it when compared to Taxact and H&R Block as it has all the bells and whistles to complete your filing on time and with the guidance of tax service professionals. But if on the other hand you a very low income to declare and just have basic needs then just go with Taxact and save some money but as long as you dont get tangled up with the all the schedules and information , it can be very overwhelming.