Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Master Lock Wants to Make Taxes Less Taxing with Digital Document Storage, Great Products, and a “Tax Relief Rewards” Sweepstakes!

It’s tax season! How many of you just jumped up and down for joy?! Probably not many, although you may be looking forward to getting a refund! But actually getting to that point is not fun. Gathering all of your records together and trying to make sense of the tax forms and rules can be a nightmare. Even if you have someone else prepare your taxes, they still rely on you to provide them with the documentation they need. I’ve found that the best way to alleviate the stress of tax preparation is to be organized throughout the year. I keep file folders in a box -- Master Lock’s 7148D Storage Security Box, pictured at left, is a great choice -- and organize all of my receipts and records into them each month as they’re incurred so I don’t have a big mess to sort through right before tax time. The Master Lock Storage Security Box comes with a locking cover and two keys, a durable steel construction, and built-in shelves for hanging folders. It’s perfect for organizing your documents and receipts throughout the year!

Not only is the Master Lock 7148D Storage Security Box a fantastic choice for your record-keeping, but Master Lock also has a terrific service called the Master Lock Vault. If you’re like my husband, who hates the clutter of papers and prefers to store his records electronically, then the Master Lock Vault provides the peace of mind you need in knowing that your records aren’t going to disappear if your computer or back-up drive suddenly go up in flames. It’s like a digital safe deposit box where you can safely and securely store confidential data, including lock combinations, social security numbers, debit or PIN numbers, credit card information, and much more.

And here’s another great reason to sign up for the Master Lock Vault program: Master Lock is rewarding Vault users with the chance to win $1,000 with the Master Lock “Tax Relief Rewards” Sweepstakes! Sign up for a Master Lock Vault by April 16, and you are eligible to win one of five $1,000 tax relief prizes! Head over to https://www.masterlock.com/tax_relief/ to sign up and enter the contest.

Finally, here are five helpful tips from Master Lock on using digital technology to make the complete tax preparation process -- from organizing receipts to claiming a refund -- quick and easy:

1. Request electronic copies of your tax forms. Many employers offer employees the option to receive their W-2 forms electronically, instead of by mail. By eliminating the risk of postal delays or missed deliveries, this ensures that your W-2 will be delivered securely as soon as it is available. Plus, faster W-2s can mean faster tax returns.

2. Securely store documents online.
Avoid the mess of a mound of paperwork by storing -- and organizing -- all of your tax-related documents online. By utilizing a free, secure service such as the Master Lock Vault (www.masterlockvault.com) you’ll have easy access to all of your files wherever you are and help ensure that none of your paper documents will ever be lost, misplaced, stolen or damaged. Not only can you upload PDF forms, but you can upload photos from your phone of important receipts and expenses for your records. All data is instantly synchronized between the website and the App. Bonus: securely store log-in information for your bank accounts and tax filing site in the Vault so you’ll never have to worry about forgetting your username or password.

3. Think taxes year-round. Don’t wait until you’re ready to file your taxes to start collecting and organizing the supporting documents you’ll need to complete your return. Avoid the scramble by capturing and uploading a digital image of your receipt each time you pay the babysitter or have a tax deductible transaction, fill a prescription at the pharmacy, or make a charitable contribution such as dropping off a clothing donation to your local thrift store.

4. Opt for direct deposit. If you’ve done everything else online, why request a hard-copy check when it comes time to claim your refund? When combined with electronic filing, direct deposit is the fastest way to get your refund. If you’re on the other side of the spectrum and find that you owe taxes, opt to pay online and you can avoid the long tax-season lines at the post office.

5. Call for help. Sometimes, outside advice is necessary, and you can now get the help you need without leaving home. Based on the complexity of your question, there are a variety of resources to turn to. For example, the IRS offers a toll-free hotline for tax questions during weekdays. Several tax-prep software providers also offer guidance via online forums or on their social media feeds.

Preparing your tax forms doesn’t have to be a nightmare every year. Pick up a Master Lock 7148D Storage Security Box, sign up for the Master Lock Vault, and follow the tips provided above to make the process a whole lot easier and stress-free. And don’t forget to enter the “Tax Relief Rewards” Sweepstakes for the chance to win a $1,000 prize!

Disclaimer: As a member of the Master Lock Live Secure Safety Squad, I have been provided with compensation and products to aid in providing my opinions and information about Master Lock. All opinions are 100% my own.


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