Printable Tax Preparation Checklist Excel Template

printable tax preparation checklist excel

Know What You Need To File Your Taxes

Welcome to Simplicity Financial’s guide to tax organization. We will provide you with a checklist for your finances to streamline your tax filing time, to optimize your day for the things that matter in life! Even if you have someone filing your taxes for you, they will require the documents featured in this tax preparation checklist. Some people who file their own taxes use spreadsheet software to keep track of which documents they need as well. Whether you require this for yourself or your tax preparer, Simplicity Financial has you covered.

Our Printable Tax Preparation Checklists

For individuals and businesses, we have created a printable tax preparation checklist Excel or Google Sheets will find compatible. All you need to do is copy (ctrl+c) the list and then paste (ctrl+v) it into your preferred spreadsheet software. We also recommend highlighting the column next to it and adding checkboxes to keep track of which documents you’ve gathered.


Tax Checklist for Individuals

  1. Personal Information
    • Social Security Number (SSN) or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN)
    • Date of Birth
    • Bank Account and Routing Number (for direct deposit)
  2. Income Documentation
    • W-2 forms from employers
    • 1099 forms for freelance or contract work
    • Other 1099 forms (1099-INT, 1099-DIV, 1099-B, etc.) for interest, dividends, and sales of stock
    • Documentation for other sources of income (rental, alimony, etc.)
  3. Deductions and Credits
    • Mortgage interest statements (Form 1098)
    • Property tax receipts
    • Receipts for charitable donations
    • Medical and dental expenses
    • Educational expenses (Form 1098-T)
  4. Previous Year’s Tax Return
    • Useful for reference and necessary if amending a previous year’s return
  5. Miscellaneous
    • Records of estimated tax payments made during the year
    • IRA contributions
    • Energy-saving home improvements


Tax Checklist for Businesses

  1. Business Identification
    • Employer Identification Number (EIN)
    • Business type (LLC, S-corp, etc.)
  2. Income Records
    • Gross receipts from sales or services
    • Sales records for tax filing
    • Returns and allowances
  3. Expense Records
    • Cost of goods sold
    • Business-related travel expenses
    • Utility expenses
    • Rent for business property
    • Advertising and marketing expenses
    • Business Use of Home
      • Proportion of home used for business
      • Utility costs, insurance, and repairs related to business use
      • Mortgage interest or rent pertaining to business space
  4. Meals and Entertainment Expenses
    • Documentation for meals (50% deductible and 100% deductible under specific conditions)
    • Records of business-related entertainment expenses
  5. Car Deductions and Mileage
    • Mileage log showing business miles driven (for standard mileage deduction)
    • Actual car expenses (gas, repairs, insurance, depreciation) if not using standard mileage rate
    • Lease payments, if applicable
  6. Asset Information
    • Purchase dates and costs of business assets
    • Depreciation schedules
  7. Employment Taxes
    • Employment tax records if the business has employees
    • Forms W-2 and W-3
    • Forms 940 and 941
  8. Miscellaneous Documents
    • Records of any estimated tax payments
    • Documents for business-related loans and interest paid
    • Insurance documents
Colleagues discussing accounting statistics report using softwar

Colleagues discussing accounting statistics report using software vector illustration. Bookkeeping and audit for annual and financial reporting concept for business presentation slides

Tax Templates Free Your Time

While you aren’t required to upload your printable tax preparation checklist to Excel, we encourage you to do so. Using tax templates and spreadsheet software can offer several benefits when it comes to tracking your tax preparation checklist. Here are three key advantages:

Organization and Efficiency

Tax templates provide a structured framework for organizing your financial information. Spreadsheet software allows you to create a comprehensive checklist, breaking down the tax preparation process into manageable tasks.

You can categorize income, deductions, and expenses in a systematic manner, making it easier to track and manage your financial data. This organization helps you identify missing information quickly and ensures that you don’t overlook any crucial details.

Spreadsheet functionalities such as sorting, filtering, and color-coding enable you to prioritize tasks, mark completed items, and track the overall progress of your tax preparation.

Automation and Accuracy

Spreadsheet software allows you to automate certain calculations, reducing the likelihood of manual errors in your tax preparation. Formulas and functions can be applied to automatically calculate totals, percentages, and other financial metrics, improving accuracy.

Tax templates often come with built-in formulas for common tax-related calculations. This can include calculations for taxable income, deductions, and credits. By using these templates, you can save time on manual computations and minimize the risk of mistakes in your tax preparation.

Time Savings and Accessibility

Tax templates provide a standardized format that eliminates the need to create a tax checklist from scratch. This saves you time and effort in designing a system to track your tax-related information.

Spreadsheet software allows for easy data entry and manipulation. You can import financial data from various sources, such as bank statements or expense reports, directly into your spreadsheet. This reduces the time spent on manual data entry and minimizes the chance of transcription errors.

Additionally, spreadsheet files are easily shareable and accessible, making collaboration with tax professionals or other stakeholders more efficient. You can also save time by reusing templates for subsequent years and making adjustments as needed.


Income Tax Practice Exercises

If you aren’t a CPA or tax preparer professionally, it’s important to give yourself as much knowledge as possible before you begin filing taxes yourself. Instead of studying a tax preparation worksheet PDF, opt for a more interactive learning experience like this one the IRS has created. Practice with scenario-based exercises to see how different living situations are taxed differently. Try to familiarize yourself with the types of documents required. Understand which claims they’re for to ensure you aren’t missing any opportunities to maximize your tax return.

If you find the practice runs difficult, let us know, and we can take over for you. Our services can be conducted remotely, so we are prepared to help anyone residing in the United States of America, as well as those living abroad who still need to file their taxes back home.

Schedule C Checklist: Optimize your time

The Schedule C checklist in Excel format is something a lot of clients request from us. While we are currently unable to directly share XLS files on our website, we have a great checklist for your small business. You can save this list or copy it to an Excel document per your preference. This checklist is your trusty sidekick, ensuring you’re armed and ready to face the business tax battlefield with confidence.

Business Information

  1. Business name, address, and Employer Identification Number (EIN)
  2. Business code (as per IRS classification)
  3. Business start date

Income Documentation

  1. Gross receipts or sales (invoices, cash register tapes, etc.)
  2. Returns and allowances
  3. Any other income sources related to your business

Expense Documentation

  1. Cost of goods sold (if applicable)
  2. Business expenses (advertising, supplies, rent, utilities, etc.)
  3. Home office expenses (if applicable)
  4. Vehicle expenses (if used for business)
  5. Travel, meals, and entertainment expenses
  6. Professional fees (consultants, legal, accounting)

Asset and Depreciation Information

  1. Details of assets purchased for the business
  2. Depreciation records for assets used in the business

Other Deductions

  1. Health insurance premiums
  2. Retirement plan contributions
  3. Self-employment tax deduction

Records of Home Office Use

  1. Square footage of home used for business
  2. Home-related expenses (mortgage interest, property taxes, utilities)


  1. Business use of personal assets (computers, cell phones)
  2. Bad debts
  3. Any other pertinent business expenses

Personal Information

  1. Social Security Number (SSN)
  2. Filing status

Good Luck With Your Tax Preparation Checklists

At Simplicity Financial, our commitment is to simplify the tax preparation journey for individuals and businesses alike. Our guide serves as a valuable resource, offering printable tax preparation checklists for both individuals and businesses that seamlessly integrate with Excel or Google Sheets.

We recognize the significance of organization and efficiency in tax filing, and we recommend harnessing the power of tax templates and spreadsheet software to optimize your preparation checklist. The three key advantages we emphasize—organization, automation, and time savings—highlight the efficiency gains that come with adopting these tools.

Moreover, we encourage the use of our additional resources for business owners, such as the Schedule C checklist in Excel format, to empower small businesses in navigating the intricacies of tax preparation. By providing user-friendly tools and insights, Simplicity Financial aims to not only simplify the tax filing process but also empower our clients to take control of their financial responsibilities. Whether you choose to file independently or seek our professional assistance, our comprehensive guide ensures you are well-equipped for a successful tax season. Happy filing!


The information provided in this blog post is for general informational purposes only and is not intended to be, nor should it be construed as, legal, financial, or tax advice. Tax laws and regulations are complex and subject to change; you should consult with a professional tax advisor, financial planner, or attorney for advice specific to your individual circumstances. The author and Simplicity Financial disclaim any liability for any errors or omissions in the information provided or for any actions taken in reliance on this information.