While the New Year has only just begun, before you know it, tax-season will be upon us. Ease some of that future tax-season stress by performing a few updates to your record keeping process and property, and focusing on good communication with your tenants. That way, by the time you do get to your taxes, you’re worry free.
Perform Pre-Spring Cleaning
If you know your receipts are disorganized, now would be the perfect time to upgrade your record keeping process. Instead of sorting through it all when taxes are on the cusp of being due, get ready for your taxes a head of time. While you’re sorting through your receipts and double checking potential tax deductibles with our checklist, consider investing in time-saving products like a scanner and a cross-cut shredder if you don’t already have them. By using these two items, you insure that your documents are safe and secure. Additionally, consider upgrading your processes to be online. Having an online rental application or interactive layout makes it easier to attract new tenants and keep sensitive rental information paperless.
Make Goals for 2016
While you’re at it, evaluate what you want to do to your rental property this year. Whether it’s a large improvement that involves construction or an easy upgrade to your curb appeal, setting up your goals now can help relieve some of that stress. Weigh the costs and gains to upgrading processes, and keep in mind that some of these might be deductible next year.
Communicate with your Tenants
You know that if there’s no communication between you and your tenants, then it’s extremely difficult to perform property repairs and upgrades. The communication disconnect creates stress itself, which isn’t fun when you’re already dealing with taxes.
While this added communication stress adds some weight, the good news is that Kelly McGonigal shows in her TEDtalk, that your body has natural defense mechanisms for stress. Oxytocin, also known as the “cuddle hormone,” compels us to strengthen close relationships. It makes you more willing to help and support the people you care about; it gives you more empathy. Surprisingly, it’s a part of the stress response. When you get stressed, Oxytocin makes you want to communicate with others.
If you’ve noticed a disconnect with your tenants, don’t fight your body’s stress response mechanism. Take some time to reconnect and make sure those relationships are still intact. You don’t have to go out of your way to talk to them in person or over the phone; social media networking has been proven to release Oxytocin as well. So tweet, text, message, or post something to your tenants. You’ll physically and mentally relieve some of that stress, while using means that are practical to you and your tenant’s schedule.
It’s difficult to not be stressed during taxes. While filling them out, there’s always a worried thought that you’ve left something out or somehow miscalculated something. While that in-the-moment anxiety can’t be fixed through planning and tips, by upgrading your record keeping processes, planning towards your future property goals, and staying in touch with your tenants, you can come into tax-season with one less thing to think about.
What do you do to prepare for tax season? How do you avoid tax related stress? Subscribe, and leave us a comment down below!