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Spring is coming, yay! So for those of you who love the outdoors in the pleasant weather, it’s time to start getting ready. And what’s more American than hot dogs and baseball? Summer barbecues! But if you’re a grill novice, don’t worry—here’s what you need to know to get the perfect grill for your space and your summer plans.

Gas or Charcoal?
The first step is to decide between a gas grill or a charcoal grill. Gas grills are generally thought of as being easier to use, often requiring just the press of a button to get started.  Charcoal grills may be less convenient, but they are considered superior in taste, producing the classic barbecue flavor in food. While gas and charcoal grills are the most popular types, some people choose to go with an electric grill, which works well for those living in condos or apartments.

How Big?
In determining the perfect grill size for you, first consider how many people you’ll be cooking for on average. If you are planning on entertaining, a larger grill may be well worth the investment. Secondly, where will the grill be stored? If space is an issue, you may have to downsize your grill. Lastly, think about the types of foods you will likely be grilling. If you’re planning on cooking larger cuts of meat, you’ll need to go with a larger grill.

Which Tools?
When purchasing a grill, don’t forget about your tools! The right tools will make all the difference. Tongs are great for grabbing and turning most foods while a spatula is handy for flipping burgers and fish. Use a barbecue brush to apply oil and sauces to food evenly and easily. And make sure you pick up a grill brush for cleanup.

Don’t let the enjoyment of cooking outdoors pass you by. Once you narrow down which grill works best for your everyday life, you’ll be ready to grill in no time!


April 15 Tax DayIt’s a day that puts fear into the hearts of many Americans—Tax Day! Will you owe? Did you choose the right allowance amount? Just what is the Affordable Care Act and will it affect you? When it comes to U.S. taxes, what goes into preparing a return accurately, without missing any deductions and credits, is beyond what most of us will ever know or begin to understand (or want to for that matter). Thankfully, tax professionals like Jackson Hewitt are here to help you make sure you get the biggest refund possible—or owe the smallest amount due.

So in the spirit of tax season, here are a few tips to help you prepare for April 15th:

  • If you’re not ready to file, but know that 90 percent of your taxes for the year have been paid, you can consider filing for an extension. You’ve paid enough of your taxes to not be charged a failure-to-pay penalty, and you’ll give yourself some extra time to get your documents together.
  • Don’t be afraid to file on time because you think you will owe taxes. There are several payment methods available for you to take care of any amount due, including payment plan options. Not filing and not paying can add up to some hefty penalties, so make sure you take some sort of action by April 15th.
  • Be careful with your personal information. Of course, this is always the case, but ID theft tends to rise during tax season. Make sure you keep all of your important data, like your social security number, credit card numbers, and bank account numbers safe.

You don’t have to know tax code to know that filing taxes is complicated. Don’t miss out on deductions or credits that could save you big on your final tax bill. Talk to a professional who can help you make the most of your tax return. Swing by and check out all of the offers still available from our tax partners, like Jackson Hewitt.

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