Inspiration

I wanted to do a hack involving business, and I decided to make a finance calculator to calculate income, deductions, and taxes. Designed to be simple to use, it is made for working class individuals who are unable to afford financial advisors or have enough time to calculate their own taxes and want to avoid paying unintentional penalties.

What it does

Taxavader, a financial calculator, calculates income, deductions, and tax withholding from default values of the average US citizen. Users can change these inputs based on their own income and deductions and the calculator will automatically change values in the table that contains all the calculated data. Users can also change their type of household depending on their family makeup, which is support by the backend. Current data is for 2020 tax brackets and tax data.

How I built it

I built the frontend using bootstrap and coded the table using JavaScript and HTML for simplicity. I made a different tab for each type of economic factor (income, deductions, tax withholding). I made the backend using Python and the Flask framework to store all the tax bracket data and the types of household.

Challenges I ran into

Wiring up the backend and frontend took longer than I thought and getting the accurate data and checking my financial calculators results with the official tax data was painstakingly difficult. In the end, the financial calculator was technically more accurate in that it calculates by the number provided and not intervals of tax brackets.

Accomplishments that I'm proud of

I am proud of the fact that I can create a completely accurate calculator within a short period of time. This was the first time I spent so much time researching and checking my calculations with real, live data.

What I learned

I learned how to make an online calculator by scratch and make it serve different types of households and tax brackets depending on user input. I learned how simplicity may be better than adding many CSS elements for a financial calculator to promote ease of access and clarity.

What's next for Taxavader

I aim to support more classifications of data as well as smaller details in taxes. I can add a secure authentication method to save data for taxes and add ways to support prior years and how that data is used for calculations. I can add stocks, bonds, etc. to the site, all while maintaining a simple, clear layout.

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