Monday, April 14, 2008

The Dumbest Thing I Did in 2007 Involved Money

I mailed in my 2007 tax payment Monday afternoon. (No, you can't have a refund this year: Not Yours.)

That, in and of itself, is not a dumb thing, though I did procrastinate more than necessary -- the return was all done, so it was just a matter of writing the check.

I did feel bad, however, for anyone who needed to do anything at the post office today. It was pretty darn crowded. (Enough so that a Mercedes SLK that was sticking halfway out of its parking spot might have actually been a hinderance, instead of merely an annoyance. Way to diminish those stereotypes, SLK-driver. Lucky for you my cellphone photo was crap.)

However, the tax season reminded me of what's probably the dumbest thing I did in 2007:

It was towards the tail end of tax season. I'd had my W-2 and other tax stuff accreting for a few months in a pile at the corner of my table (which is already cluttered and crowded on its best days), and when the time came for my appointment with my tax preparer, I bundled everything up, put it in a folder, and took it in.

Easy squeezy, right? It wasn't a particularly complex filing. I sent my payment in and put it out of my mind.

That is, until a few months later, I was going through another, nearby pile on the table, and found an interest statement with some earnings that should have been reported. (It was for an newly-created account that I'd forgotten about, and it had apparently migrated into another pile. It was not an insubstantial amount.)

Welcome to the land of the amended return. Please don't audit me. Pretty please?

Lesson learned -- in 2007, I took concrete steps to improve my tax document management system: I upgraded to a chip clip.

I'm pretty dumb when it comes to money and finance. In fact, the second dumbest thing I did in 2007 was also financial (I was 10 minutes away from forgetting to exercise a mess of stock options that were due to expire at the end of the trading day. This, despite the post-it note on my monitor. It wasn't, like, Learjet money or anything, but it would have made me sad.)


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

chip clip... that's great.