taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

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panhead
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taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by panhead » Thu Nov 08, 2018 8:14 am

I used the home/business 1065 bundle last year and I paid $100, currently its listed as $200 for this year. Last year was the first time I used taxact, and had been using a CPA prior to that for years. I suppose in the grander scheme of things this isn't a lot of money for a quality product, and it is certainly cheaper than using a CPA, but a 100% price increase? I'm hoping to sell the rental property in the next couple years so I won't need the 1065 part after that.
To make this actionable and not just a bitch session, what have people done with taxact in the past? Do they discount the software any time of the year, maybe black friday or after the first of the year? Should I wait or just suck it up?

Edited to add, I also need the state version as I'm in Mass.

Silk McCue
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by Silk McCue » Thu Nov 08, 2018 9:25 am

Ouch on the increase cost over last year. I would wait to purchase for discounts that might occur around Black Friday or Cyber Monday in a few weeks.

On the flip side the product including state returns seems like a "reasonable" price without respect to how much you paid last year. Hopefully you will get a price drop before you need to purchase.

Cheers

Tamales
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by Tamales » Thu Nov 08, 2018 10:15 am

This opinion piece on TaxAct's future viability is interesting (parent company blucora, formerly infospace):
https://seekingalpha.com/article/406853 ... rain-wreck

Also have a look at the wikipedia entry:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TaxAct

Most recently, note that its President, appointed in 2017, resigned in May of this year. So in my view, all bets are off regarding their past history of discounts potentially applying to the 2018 tax year. Given their financial state, the company seems to need to jack up the prices in order to remain viable.

I have used what is currently called the Plus version, but given all of the above, it seems worthwhile to consider switching to one of the big-two (turbotax or H&R Block). I just don't know how much of a pain switching tax software would be since Taxact is all I've ever used (I always manually prepared and filed before that)

As far as price history, the Plus version prices I got in the past 5 years are as follows:

Tax year 2013: all same as 2014

Tax year: 2014
Software: Taxact
Version: Deluxe (homeowner/itemize/investor)
download software cost:$19 (8.82 fed, 10.17 state)
state filing cost: $10
total: $29

Tax year: 2015
Software: Taxact
Version: Plus (homeowner/itemize/investor)
download software cost: $30 (federal 29.99, state 0 extra)
state filing cost: $10
total: $40

Tax year: 2016
Software: Taxact
Version: Plus (homeowner/itemize/investor)
download software cost: $24 (federal 23.99, state 0 extra)
state filing cost: $10
total: $34

Tax year: 2017
Software: Taxact
Version: Plus (homeowner/itemize/investor)
download software cost: $32 (federal 32.00, state 0 extra)
state filing cost: $10
total: $42

and for 2018 it looks like an increase in the 50-100% range, with a change in the pricing model, where state is now a separate additional cost, and I presume the extra state filing fee on top of that. Whether this gets discounted between now and April 2019, or maybe today's prices are the lowest they will be, is hard to say, given the lack of stability at the company.

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panhead
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by panhead » Thu Nov 08, 2018 10:55 am

Silk McCue wrote:
Thu Nov 08, 2018 9:25 am
Ouch on the increase cost over last year. I would wait to purchase for discounts that might occur around Black Friday or Cyber Monday in a few weeks.

On the flip side the product including state returns seems like a "reasonable" price without respect to how much you paid last year. Hopefully you will get a price drop before you need to purchase.

Cheers
Yeah, I agree if I view the price in a vacuum it wouldn't be unreasonable. Looking at the previous post concerning company viability is very interesting though. Maybe it is time to think about switching....

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panhead
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by panhead » Thu Nov 08, 2018 11:02 am

Tamales wrote:
Thu Nov 08, 2018 10:15 am
This opinion piece on TaxAct's future viability is interesting (parent company blucora, formerly infospace):
https://seekingalpha.com/article/406853 ... rain-wreck

Also have a look at the wikipedia entry:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TaxAct

Most recently, note that its President, appointed in 2017, resigned in May of this year. So in my view, all bets are off regarding their past history of discounts potentially applying to the 2018 tax year. Given their financial state, the company seems to need to jack up the prices in order to remain viable.

I have used what is currently called the Plus version, but given all of the above, it seems worthwhile to consider switching to one of the big-two (turbotax or H&R Block). I just don't know how much of a pain switching tax software would be since Taxact is all I've ever used (I always manually prepared and filed before that)

As far as price history, the Plus version prices I got in the past 5 years are as follows:

Tax year 2013: all same as 2014

Tax year: 2014
Software: Taxact
Version: Deluxe (homeowner/itemize/investor)
download software cost:$19 (8.82 fed, 10.17 state)
state filing cost: $10
total: $29

Tax year: 2015
Software: Taxact
Version: Plus (homeowner/itemize/investor)
download software cost: $30 (federal 29.99, state 0 extra)
state filing cost: $10
total: $40

Tax year: 2016
Software: Taxact
Version: Plus (homeowner/itemize/investor)
download software cost: $24 (federal 23.99, state 0 extra)
state filing cost: $10
total: $34

Tax year: 2017
Software: Taxact
Version: Plus (homeowner/itemize/investor)
download software cost: $32 (federal 32.00, state 0 extra)
state filing cost: $10
total: $42

and for 2018 it looks like an increase in the 50-100% range, with a change in the pricing model, where state is now a separate additional cost, and I presume the extra state filing fee on top of that. Whether this gets discounted between now and April 2019, or maybe today's prices are the lowest they will be, is hard to say, given the lack of stability at the company.
This was very interesting, thank you for this. I was unaware of the company's situation, and this certainly makes me think to look into switching products. Last year was the first year I used Taxact, and the first year in well over a decade since I used diy tax software. There was a lot of stuff I had to dig up and enter for the 1065 filing, and I'm hoping that TaxAct will update the 2018 return with that info using my previous return. I could certainly go to another software, but it took me a while to figure out how to enter a lot of stuff correctly in TaxAct and I hate to climb that learning curve again, though I certainly could. I think I'm going to stick with TaxAct for now, and hope they survive and are reasonably enough priced to use through the 2020 tax year. After that, my need for the 1065 should (hopefully) be done and my situation simplifies a lot.

Topic Author
panhead
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by panhead » Thu Nov 08, 2018 11:07 am

Tamales wrote:
Thu Nov 08, 2018 10:15 am
This opinion piece on TaxAct's future viability is interesting (parent company blucora, formerly infospace):
https://seekingalpha.com/article/406853 ... rain-wreck
Wow I should've read this before responding. This does look bad, and if they are depending on cost increases, they are also probably trying to cut costs, ie software engineering costs, which might also effect product quality.

I'm going to seriously consider changing products this year....sigh.

TravelGeek
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by TravelGeek » Thu Nov 08, 2018 11:30 am

panhead wrote:
Thu Nov 08, 2018 8:14 am
I used the home/business 1065 bundle last year and I paid $100, currently its listed as $200 for this year.
Does anyone actually pay list price for tax software?

Tamales
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by Tamales » Thu Nov 08, 2018 12:18 pm

I just pulled up the Taxact website, and apparently they've changed the model yet again. Two days ago there was still a "Plus" version (download version), but as of today there is no longer a Plus version. The equivalent is apparently the Premier version, for $81.90, plus a fee for state filing (previously it was $10 for this, so $91.90 total. That means ~120% price increase!!!

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panhead
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by panhead » Thu Nov 08, 2018 4:00 pm

Tamales wrote:
Thu Nov 08, 2018 12:18 pm
I just pulled up the Taxact website, and apparently they've changed the model yet again. Two days ago there was still a "Plus" version (download version), but as of today there is no longer a Plus version. The equivalent is apparently the Premier version, for $81.90, plus a fee for state filing (previously it was $10 for this, so $91.90 total. That means ~120% price increase!!!
Yeah, I think what you were seeing a couple of days ago was still the 2017 products, at least that's what I saw.
Crazy eh?

Topic Author
panhead
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by panhead » Thu Nov 08, 2018 4:21 pm

I've tried to price turbotax, and for what I need, it appears to be even more expensive. H&R block seems cheaper, but the reviews on the business software are not good.
Looks like I might be sticking with the devil I know.....

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panhead
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by panhead » Thu Nov 08, 2018 4:23 pm

TravelGeek wrote:
Thu Nov 08, 2018 11:30 am
panhead wrote:
Thu Nov 08, 2018 8:14 am
I used the home/business 1065 bundle last year and I paid $100, currently its listed as $200 for this year.
Does anyone actually pay list price for tax software?
Actually, I have no idea. I know turbotax is available all over the place, amazon, BJs, etc. I'm not sure that's the case for taxact. As I said, last year was the first time I used tax software in well over a decade, so I'm not familiar with the pricing models.
Edited to add: I will sure be shopping around this year for a deal however!

Dottie57
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by Dottie57 » Thu Nov 08, 2018 5:07 pm

I am not sure deals will be available given the cost of programming changes for the trump tax changes.

Tamales
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by Tamales » Thu Nov 08, 2018 5:18 pm

FYI here's a fairly thorough comparison of the "big 3" retail tax software packages:
https://thecollegeinvestor.com/15201/co ... #tab-con-0

PS I found a chart from back in 2012 that showed Turbotax having ~65% market share, Infospace(TaxAct) and H&R Block have about 15% each, and all the rest having ~5% (it was an unlabeled pie chart so I'm eyeballing the numbers). I couldn't find more recent freely available numbers.

Parthenon
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by Parthenon » Thu Nov 08, 2018 6:18 pm

You may want to review https://www.consumeraffairs.com/finance ... nline.html before using them.

Ed
"What am I gonna do if I run out of money?"

bnes
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by bnes » Thu Nov 08, 2018 8:54 pm

Keep in mind TurboTax's retail price is not the full price you pay, as at the very end they'll hit you up for an e-File fee.
Competition for full strength individual tax software would be nice...
The comparison chart from above is great : https://thecollegeinvestor.com/15201/co ... #tab-con-0

2015
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by 2015 » Fri Nov 09, 2018 1:43 am

Tamales wrote:
Thu Nov 08, 2018 12:18 pm
I just pulled up the Taxact website, and apparently they've changed the model yet again. Two days ago there was still a "Plus" version (download version), but as of today there is no longer a Plus version. The equivalent is apparently the Premier version, for $81.90, plus a fee for state filing (previously it was $10 for this, so $91.90 total. That means ~120% price increase!!!
Just saw this too. Really sucks. OP, thanks for the head up.

I just found this for TT--$50.98 for pre-order fed/state download + $19.99 for state e-file, is cheaper than TA. I started with TT and it wouldn't bother me to switch back.

https://taxmarkdown.com/product/turbota ... gLTHfD_BwE

late to the party
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by late to the party » Sat Nov 24, 2018 12:44 pm

I've been using taxact for probably 8 years now, and am a huge fan. I have found the last few years that they have one email notification for the current year "deal". Got that email yesterday, and the deal is good thru Monday -- 18CYBERMON25.

I have always gotten the "plus" edition, but this year, they had a "deluxe' and "premier", and it appears that the difference is that the premier also includes schedule e. The deluxe is on sale from $76.90 to $57.67 and the premier from $81.90 to $61.42. (25% off). There are also basic and self-employed and business options. You can check for yourselves at taxact.com/tax-preparation.

It includes one free state, 5 free federal e-files. The past 2 years I have paid $10 for each state e-file.

Tamales
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by Tamales » Sat Nov 24, 2018 1:27 pm

late to the party wrote:
Sat Nov 24, 2018 12:44 pm
I've been using taxact for probably 8 years now, and am a huge fan. I have found the last few years that they have one email notification for the current year "deal". Got that email yesterday, and the deal is good thru Monday -- 18CYBERMON25.

I have always gotten the "plus" edition, but this year, they had a "deluxe' and "premier", and it appears that the difference is that the premier also includes schedule e. The deluxe is on sale from $76.90 to $57.67 and the premier from $81.90 to $61.42. (25% off). There are also basic and self-employed and business options. You can check for yourselves at taxact.com/tax-preparation.

It includes one free state, 5 free federal e-files. The past 2 years I have paid $10 for each state e-file.
Thank you LTTP! I don't know why I didn't get that email, but that code works as advertised and is probably as good as it's going to get. I'm not clear that there won't be an additional $10 for state e-file though, since it says "state e-file additional" below the Premier listing here: https://www.taxact.com/tax-preparation

late to the party
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by late to the party » Sat Nov 24, 2018 1:44 pm

Let me clarify. I meant to say that included in the price is the program for one state. As far as I remember, there was always a charge to e-file each state return. You can print the state tax returns and mail them for free. Or what I sometimes did, is just print the form, and go to my state's website and punch in the numbers to file electronically that way.

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OAG
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Re: taxact 2018 tax yaear software price increase 100%?

Post by OAG » Sat Nov 24, 2018 9:25 pm

I have started my 2018 taxes on FREETAXUSA this month. Having used in last year they populated forms with last years data. I just edited the numbers for 2018. Return is "open" and their site just awaiting final numbers and of course Jan 2 when they are scheduled to go live for completing and accepting the return for filing with the IRS on Jan 21 when the IRS is scheduled to start accepting returns for 2018. FREETAXUSA provides a complete personal print out (or PDF) for the final filed return and follow up data to track your return in the IRS system. Seems to work just fine for me and the price is right (free). I file my State return using the OHIO online system (which is also free).
OAG=Old Army Guy. Retired CW4 USA (US Army) in 1979 21 years of service @ 38.

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panhead
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by panhead » Sat Nov 24, 2018 9:33 pm

late to the party wrote:
Sat Nov 24, 2018 12:44 pm
I've been using taxact for probably 8 years now, and am a huge fan. I have found the last few years that they have one email notification for the current year "deal". Got that email yesterday, and the deal is good thru Monday -- 18CYBERMON25.

I have always gotten the "plus" edition, but this year, they had a "deluxe' and "premier", and it appears that the difference is that the premier also includes schedule e. The deluxe is on sale from $76.90 to $57.67 and the premier from $81.90 to $61.42. (25% off). There are also basic and self-employed and business options. You can check for yourselves at taxact.com/tax-preparation.

It includes one free state, 5 free federal e-files. The past 2 years I have paid $10 for each state e-file.
Thanks for the heads up, unfortunately when I tried using the code for the home and business bundle ($200) it didn't make any difference.

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CMartel2
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by CMartel2 » Sun Nov 25, 2018 1:29 am

I dumped TaxAct last year after their price hike for FreeTaxUSA and was quite happy. Our tax return last year was more complex last year than it will be this year, even though we will still itemize. I believe the tax cuts will take a lot of business from these tax preparation companies if they keep hiking prices, as for most Americans, taxes are only getting easier to complete and with more taking the standard deduction.

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beyou
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by beyou » Sun Nov 25, 2018 8:22 am

Parthenon wrote:
Thu Nov 08, 2018 6:18 pm
You may want to review https://www.consumeraffairs.com/finance ... nline.html before using them.

Ed
Above notes people fo whom their taxes were never filed by TaxAct. While have not heard of same problem before from any of these service, I usually go to my state tax collecting website to verify status of refund. Good indicator of acceptance or lack thereof. Seems prudent no matrer which service one uses. Similar PAGE on IRS site. I wonder if they work when you OWE taxes ?

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Blues
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by Blues » Sun Nov 25, 2018 8:47 am

b0B wrote:
Sat Nov 24, 2018 1:24 pm
Like many here, I am done with TaxACT. I used it for several years, but it's clear that it's now over.

I'm also not interested in all the pricing and form availability games of the other two big tax software producers.

Last year I looked around and settled on FreeTaxUSA
https://www.freetaxusa.com/
viewtopic.php?f=2&t=263299
It's only online (no software download), but works fine.

This is exactly the path I took last year after a dozen or so years with TaxAct.

(And thankfully always managed to pay $20 or under for federal and state during my years with them. I never paid any of the outlandish increases they subjected their customers to in recent years.)
“Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.” - Sun Tzu | "Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth." - Mike Tyson

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panhead
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by panhead » Sun Nov 25, 2018 9:10 am

Blues wrote:
Sun Nov 25, 2018 8:47 am
b0B wrote:
Sat Nov 24, 2018 1:24 pm
Like many here, I am done with TaxACT. I used it for several years, but it's clear that it's now over.

I'm also not interested in all the pricing and form availability games of the other two big tax software producers.

Last year I looked around and settled on FreeTaxUSA
https://www.freetaxusa.com/
viewtopic.php?f=2&t=263299
It's only online (no software download), but works fine.

This is exactly the path I took last year after a dozen or so years with TaxAct.

(And thankfully always managed to pay $20 or under for federal and state during my years with them. I never paid any of the outlandish increases they subjected their customers to in recent years.)
I will likely use the taxact business software, but I'm considering using freetaxusa for my personal federal and state. I did a test return in freetaxusa last year, and have used it this year to estimate my 2018 liability. I like the interface.

orangecrushv
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by orangecrushv » Sun Nov 25, 2018 1:33 pm

75% discount email (from slickdeals)

Basic 2.49
Deluxe 7.49
Premier 8.74
Self Employed 12.49

https://em.taxact.com/pub/cc?_ri_=X0Gzc2X%3DYQpglLjHJlTQGgOwczg1vCCSR7g9P0lMoYzcbPCTzapzbbjdA2TrwbbCzazab4qbYersFpVXtpKX%3DWWSBSYCT&_ei_=Eh5hYCv1zcLAC9-DjZoHbZzwyRhs4xyeLzaSYqB84XEmONuno5oz2ULM0xAq-zg8EoX0-mPEEsgS0gShJ9E86o-bPZsLG3QfGMKg9Uf9I5MeC4qn0cg6A2bg4Q6dxDPcyfO7RgPb_BDf2wsSRpUUN3y4-otxmhymGIGbqWbDBIPHaInI3BoZbHXMlVLcJZcRXRcCnnd6Nw

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Blues
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by Blues » Sun Nov 25, 2018 1:52 pm

^^^^^ That slickdeals offer still requires paying anywhere from $20 to $37 extra for state filing.

Not such a good deal in that case. I'll stick with FreeTaxUSA, thank you.
“Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.” - Sun Tzu | "Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth." - Mike Tyson

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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by minesweep » Sun Nov 25, 2018 3:47 pm

orangecrushv wrote:
Sun Nov 25, 2018 1:33 pm
75% discount email (from slickdeals)

Basic 2.49
Deluxe 7.49
Premier 8.74
Self Employed 12.49

https://em.taxact.com/pub/cc?_ri_=X0Gzc ... XRcCnnd6Nw
Thanks for the heads up! I signed up for the Premier for myself and sister ( I do her taxes). Funny that you need Premier for interest,dividends & investments. They used to be covered by Deluxe or Deluxe Plus. Anyway $8.49 for Premier is a bargain. State at $36.95 is pretty steep. Glad my state has a free efile system.

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F150HD
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by F150HD » Fri Nov 30, 2018 10:11 pm

I don't use the program but ran across this... https://www.techbargains.com/deal/433078/taxact-plus

-
Image

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panhead
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by panhead » Tue Dec 04, 2018 9:48 am

F150HD wrote:
Fri Nov 30, 2018 10:11 pm
I don't use the program but ran across this... https://www.techbargains.com/deal/433078/taxact-plus
Looks like I'm late for it but it doesn't matter as I need the home & business bundle.

Thanks for posting though, hopefully it helped others!

-Pan-

TheOscarGuy
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by TheOscarGuy » Tue Dec 04, 2018 11:24 am

F150HD wrote:
Fri Nov 30, 2018 10:11 pm
I don't use the program but ran across this... https://www.techbargains.com/deal/433078/taxact-plus

-
Image
Yeah, I think I saw it somewhere and signed up a few days ago. Then I confirmed the pricing with their customer service, to be sure :happy

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Blues
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by Blues » Tue Dec 04, 2018 12:31 pm

"New" users and "some" return users. Nothing like making it opaque.

(These are the types of games that had me leaving after the 2016 return was filed, never to return (pun intended.)
“Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.” - Sun Tzu | "Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth." - Mike Tyson

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Electron
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by Electron » Sat Sep 07, 2019 2:42 pm

Does anyone know if TaxAct 2018 Free Edition is available as a download? The download link only seems to offer the paid versions.

I have TaxAct 2014 and TaxAct 2015 installed on my computer and both were excellent products. I've used both programs to check my own tax calculations and model different tax cases.

I should also note that the programs had the capability to fill in portions of IRS Form 2210 Schedule AI.
Electron

brianH
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Re: taxact 2018 tax year software price increase 100%?

Post by brianH » Sat Sep 07, 2019 2:52 pm

b0B wrote:
Sat Nov 24, 2018 1:24 pm
Like many here, I am done with TaxACT. I used it for several years, but it's clear that it's now over.

I'm also not interested in all the pricing and form availability games of the other two big tax software producers.

Last year I looked around and settled on FreeTaxUSA
I'll third this recommendation. I switched off TaxAct when they did their price bump 3 seasons ago, and I've been very happy with FreeTaxUSA for the last 3 returns. Not much material difference from TA.

FTUSA does have a coupon that usually comes out towards the end of the year for 10% off, but no other pricing shenanigans (yet.)

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