H & R Block Tax Software on sale

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H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby chuck h » Sat Jan 05, 2013 8:15 am

There is a one day sale of H&R Block tax software at Amazon. I just purchased the H&R Block Deluxe + State for 21.99, which is normally about $44.
It is on sale at this price only today.
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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby sscritic » Sat Jan 05, 2013 9:02 am

Thanks for the tip. I have been watching for it for a week or so. Last year the sale was on January 7 (I think). They sent me an email at midnight, but it was in my junk box, so I didn't see it until after I placed my order (thanks to you) when I went looking for my purchase confirmation.

Thanks again.
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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby Groundhog » Sat Jan 05, 2013 9:07 am

Thanks. Just a note, they also have the deluxe version federal only (for those that don't need the state) for $16.99.
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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby Groundhog » Sat Jan 05, 2013 9:11 am

sscritic wrote:Thanks for the tip. I have been watching for it for a week or so. Last year the sale was on January 7 (I think). They sent me an email at midnight, but it was in my junk box, so I didn't see it until after I placed my order (thanks to you) when I went looking for my purchase confirmation.

Thanks again.


You are correct, I bought it on January 7 last year. I received my camelcamelcamel email this morning alerting me of the price reduction.
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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby nirvines88 » Sat Jan 05, 2013 11:24 am

Seems like a good price... I'm going to try to do my own taxes for the first time this year... Do the Bogleheads recommend H&R Block or Turbotax?! I have a very straightforward return, so I really might not need either - but I may get one to be safe!
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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby investor1 » Sat Jan 05, 2013 11:37 am

If your return is really straightforward, the Deluxe version is overkill for you. Go with the free version. H&R Block or TurboTax would work fine as would many others. I think I might try Tax Act this year as all I need is the free version for my federal return and Tax Act seems to offer the cheapest solution for state returns.

That or I might just do my state returns on my own.
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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby texasdiver » Sat Jan 05, 2013 11:45 am

Thanks for the head's up. I have an unopened CD of the same thing sent to me by H&R Block that will cost $24.95 if I activate it so that is an $8 savings. Here in Texas we don't need the state version.

I can't tell from the Amazon web site but can anyone confirm if the amazon version includes the 5 free e-files that come with the normal version you buy at local stores? I know in the past I have seen extra cheap versions of TaxCut for sale at the local Wal-Mart but after looking at the fine print on the back it was clear they didn't include the free e-filing which completely negated the cheaper price unless you intend to print your return on paper and mail it in.
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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby texasdiver » Sat Jan 05, 2013 11:49 am

nirvines88 wrote:Seems like a good price... I'm going to try to do my own taxes for the first time this year... Do the Bogleheads recommend H&R Block or Turbotax?! I have a very straightforward return, so I really might not need either - but I may get one to be safe!


Don't think it makes any difference at all. Both work exactly the same way and for a simple return will be easy. This is a software you basically use once and are done with and both will do the job. It's not like some sort of productivity software you use daily for years and might care about obscure features, menu bars, tool bars, etc. They both do exactly the same thing so just pick the cheaper one.

I used turbotax for years until they changed their policies some years back and wouldn't let you run your copy on two different computers. I switched to TaxCut at that time and never looked back. That was a long time ago.

PS, a good reason to do your taxes on computer with one of these packages is that you can generate .pdf files of all your forms for electronic storage and recordkeeping. Obviously you can do the same thing by scanning in paper forms but this is just more convenient. I've done various mortgage refi applications over the past couple years and it was so easy to just pull up the .pdf files of our taxes and upload or email them as part of our mortgage application.
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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby rr2 » Sat Jan 05, 2013 12:55 pm

I am not sure if this version includes free state efile.
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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby tfb » Sat Jan 05, 2013 1:21 pm

sscritic wrote:Thanks for the tip. I have been watching for it for a week or so. Last year the sale was on January 7 (I think). They sent me an email at midnight, but it was in my junk box, so I didn't see it until after I placed my order (thanks to you) when I went looking for my purchase confirmation.

I paid $19.99 last year (lowest price was $18.99). I'm holding out with a camelcamelcamel alert set at $19.99.Timing the tax software market :)
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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby sscritic » Sat Jan 05, 2013 1:35 pm

tfb wrote:I paid $19.99 last year (lowest price was $18.99). I'm holding out with a camelcamelcamel alert set at $19.99.Timing the tax software market :)

Market timing, all for two bucks. :)
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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby tfb » Sat Jan 05, 2013 1:42 pm

sscritic wrote:
tfb wrote:I paid $19.99 last year (lowest price was $18.99). I'm holding out with a camelcamelcamel alert set at $19.99.Timing the tax software market :)

Market timing, all for two bucks. :)

But it's 10%! :D The alert was already set before this price drop. Price in December was $26. So the sale today is only a $4 drop anyway.
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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby sscritic » Sat Jan 05, 2013 1:44 pm

tfb wrote:
sscritic wrote:
tfb wrote:I paid $19.99 last year (lowest price was $18.99). I'm holding out with a camelcamelcamel alert set at $19.99.Timing the tax software market :)

Market timing, all for two bucks. :)

But it's 10%! :D The alert was already set before this price drop. Price in December was $26. So the sale today is only a $4 drop anyway.

No, no, no! Wrong way to compute your savings. Don't measure from the last low price, measure from the peak. When we tell our friends how well our portfolio is doing, we always measure from the lowest low we can find, not from the last peak. This is the same, only upside down.
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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby investor1 » Sat Jan 05, 2013 1:45 pm

texasdiver wrote:PS, a good reason to do your taxes on computer with one of these packages is that you can generate .pdf files of all your forms for electronic storage and recordkeeping.

TurboTax has provided the PDF files to users which use the online version for years. I have used the free online version for the past three years and have all of my PDFs.
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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby umfundi » Sat Jan 05, 2013 7:16 pm

Snagged it, thank you.

I still refuse to have anything to do with Intuit / Quicken since they screwed me over license authentication a decade ago.

Have been a happy Tax Cut / H&R Block customer ever since.

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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby gary11 » Sat Jan 05, 2013 7:49 pm

chuck h wrote:There is a one day sale of H&R Block tax software at Amazon. I just purchased the H&R Block Deluxe + State for 21.99, which is normally about $44.
It is on sale at this price only today.


Just ordered it. Thank you!!
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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby DEBTINATOR » Sat Jan 05, 2013 8:36 pm

Anyone know how much this would cost me if I end up needing to file in 2 states?
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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby campy2010 » Sat Jan 05, 2013 8:47 pm

One of the deal sites mentioned that some folks were receiving free efiles in the HR Block CDs that arrive in the mail. It seemed skewed towards people who had used HR Block in the past and had switched to a competitor in the last couple of years. So, check your junk mail.
Last edited by campy2010 on Sat Jan 05, 2013 9:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby sscritic » Sat Jan 05, 2013 9:07 pm

DEBTINATOR wrote:Anyone know how much this would cost me if I end up needing to file in 2 states?

e-file one or both? Ask H&R Block.

H&R Block At Home Deluxe Tax Software
state — 1 state program included. Additional states are $39.95 each.
state e-file — $19.95 for each state e-file used

So what does it cost you for two states with two e-files? (I only do searches, I don't do arithmetic.)

Don't forget the base price.
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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby tfb » Sat Jan 26, 2013 9:02 pm

Price dropped to $21.99 again.
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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby SSSS » Sat Jan 26, 2013 9:11 pm

I do my taxes with 2 or 3 of the major tax programs online for free, verify they all match, then file with TaxAct since it's by far the cheapest. Sometimes Turbotax or H&R will come up with something that I didn't catch in TaxAct, but I can normally go back into TaxCut and wrangle it into submission.
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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby tj » Sat Jan 26, 2013 11:21 pm

The 2012 version of excel1040 is up at excel1040.com I like to practice on that before I do the FreeFile - so easy!
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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby kaneohe » Tue Jan 29, 2013 11:24 am

For H&R Block software users: just curious about that software......I was playing around with the H&R Block online tax calculator (not software) and got a different result than I expected. My results do agree w/ another commercial tax software
(not TT). I am curious about whether the H&R Block tax software has the same issue.

This scenario is an interesting variation of the stacked bars of ordinary income and QDIV/LTCG. Typically in discussions about the stacked bar model, it is assumed that LTCG> 0, so LTCG/QDIV are added together, stacked on top of the ordinary income and then the taxes are calculate separately for both bars , then added together for the total.

The interesting variation is what happens if LTCG< 0 (e.g. large capital loss carryover). The programmer might have assumed that you take the sum of QDIV and LTCG including their polarity......thus resulting in a lower number than QDIV. If my understanding of the QDIV/CG wksht is correct, if CG is negative, then you use 0 , so the bar should be QDIV in value. If the capital loss is <3000> , this results in a $450 difference in tax in the 15% tax bracket which is exactly the difference I see.........so I think I understand what is happening; the question is who is right?

In the bar chart model, I think if CG is LTCG > 0, you add CG to QDIV bar, but if net CG is < 0, you "subtract" from the ordinary income bar making it smaller.

Two simple scenarios to investigate on the Block software:
MFJ , std deduction, both > 65 y.o. ,
1) 32 K ordinary income; 40K QDIV, CG = 0
2) 32K ordinary income; 40K QDIV, CG = -3000 (a loss)

The Block calculator results:
1) Taxable Inc = 50,200 ; Tax= 1020
2) Taxable Inc = 47,200 ; Tax = 1020 I think this tax should be lower by $450

Would be curious what the Block software does. Block says the calculator is just a simple tool for estimating and that the software gets IRS approval and much more scrutiny. No doubt true about the latter, but still ....makes you wonder.
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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby sscritic » Tue Jan 29, 2013 12:03 pm

Since you aren't looking at the tax software but some online calculator, I can't say what is going on. Did your numbers come from doing the Qualified Dividends and Capital Gain Tax Worksheet in the instructions by hand?

I get a difference of $300 (10% of the $3000), but I didn't use over 65 (that would have required entering birthdates).

From the tax worksheet for Schedule D:
Line 36 6559 and 7009 (difference of $450 or 15% of 3000)

Line 1 49500 and 52500 (difference of $3000)

Line 19 9500 and 12500 (difference of $3000) [This is after the removal of the $40k]

Line 34 953 and 1253 (difference of $300)

From the tax tables using my own eyes:
Tax on 9500 953
Tax on 12500 1253
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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby kaneohe » Tue Jan 29, 2013 1:11 pm

ssc..........thanks for spending the time to poke around. I just made up a different simpler example for this thread and forgot about the 10% bracket so I suspect you are correct (10% of 3K delta rather than 15%). and didn't calculate it out.
The original example which probably had higher base ordinary income I did calculate by hand, by my Excel spreadsheet based (from some yrs ago), and by another commercial tax software. The key thing tho is that there is a delta in tax which is different than the Block calculator.

Did you also run it thru your Block tax software (or perhaps you haven't received it yet) ?
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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby sscritic » Tue Jan 29, 2013 2:24 pm

Sorry if I wasn't clear. That was H&R Block At Home on my computer, except for the "my own eyes" used to verify the tax from the tax table (my eyes matched theirs).
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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby kaneohe » Tue Jan 29, 2013 3:15 pm

ok thanks. .......so it looks like just the online calculator has that error so they probably won't fix it even tho
I suggested it was bad for marketing their real product to have a bug on their free demo.

I'd like to check Taxcaster too but since I had the Mac cleaned up, it doesn't load completely. There's a very non-obvious
statement hidden in the blue screen that it needs Adobe Flash but I had some concerns about whether there were security issues.
I know Steve Jobs didn't like Flash but perhaps that was just for mobile products and for other reasons than security.
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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby hlfo718 » Tue Jan 29, 2013 4:35 pm

Why the heck is the taxcut online deluxe version 44.95 + another 39.95 for state? who in their right mind pays 85 bucks to file?
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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby SSSS » Tue Jan 29, 2013 5:04 pm

hlfo718 wrote:Why the heck is the taxcut online deluxe version 44.95 + another 39.95 for state? who in their right mind pays 85 bucks to file?


In the CPA thread people apparently pay $300+.

I don't know why you'd pay money for anything but TaxAct. I use TurboTax and H&R Block for validating my TaxAct results & looking for things it might not have caught (which I can then go back and figure out how to replicate in TaxAct), but I would never actually pay for them.
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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby sscritic » Tue Jan 29, 2013 5:51 pm

hlfo718 wrote:Why the heck is the taxcut online deluxe version 44.95 + another 39.95 for state? who in their right mind pays 85 bucks to file?

Most people get the version with the state included, but if you want to pay twice, no one will stop you. Actually, they might, so you may have to go elsewhere to buy a second copy for your state. Also, why are you paying an extra $15 to start with? You said online deluxe, so I looked up online deluxe:
Complex filing made easy with
H&R Block At Home™ Deluxe
$29.95
http://www.hrblock.com/online-tax-prepa ... eluxe.html
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Re: H & R Block Tax Software on sale

Postby Armada » Thu Jan 31, 2013 10:48 pm

As a multi-year user of H&R Block's software, they always send me a discounted package. This year the total cost for the deluxe version with one state is $34.95.
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