Using This Years Taxes To Save On Next Years Taxes

By Richard Chapo You just got done paying taxes or filing an extension and are grumpy. If you are smart, you will use this miserable event to save some cash for next year. Using This Years Taxes to Save On Next Years Taxes For most people, preparing and filing taxes is the equivalent of sticking a pin in a body part. It simply is not fun. Heck, it is not even amusing. One of the reasons is you inevitably find some part of the process where you wonder how you could possible not have more deductions or credits. You fully realize you should tweak your finances to maximize certain expense areas and, by God, you are definitely going to do it for next year. This admirable goal, much like a New Years Resolution, fades into antiquity after about a month. You should not let this happen! There is no better time than now to proactively plan for savings on next year’s taxes. Having just completed your taxes, you inherently know where you got hurt. Even if you do not, you inevitably felt like you paid more than your fair share. To avoid this, you need to do some tax planning. Stop groaning. Tax planning may sound boring, but it actually very exciting if you think about it the right way. If I told you a trip to Vegas would definitely result in $2,000 in your pocket, would you be excited to go? Of course you would. Well, tax planning has…

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Don't Overpay Your Taxes

By Amy F. Goodmann Pay your fair share of taxes and not more. You should be a responsible adult, pull your weight and not shirk your responsibilities. But why overpay your taxes. There can be a number of reasons – or rationalizations. First a person may want to stay on the right side of the IRS. Why draw concern and attention. So what if I overpay a bit of taxes. At least I will sleep soundly at night. First of all it is highly unlikely that you are going to receive any due consideration or appreciation from the I.R.S. when trouble comes your way. Best not to stay up late waiting for the congratulatory letter from the I.R.S. It’s analogous to the bank who called in a customer for a late payment. The customer asked how much owed – the banker answered $ 1000. The customer reminded the banker (to no avail) that the previous month he had a balance of $ 10,000 in the bank and lost no sleep over it. The banker was not impressed with the debate and arguments made and demanded payment all the same. If you shop at Wal-Mart do you pay $ 15 for an item that is charged at $ 10? The same holds true when paying taxes. You may say that it is a forced saving. It may well be true that if the money was not held in trust by the IRS you would have no money saved. However two points…

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Tip Earnings and Taxes

by Richard A. Chapo If you work in a service where you get tips, guess what? The IRS expects you to report them and pay taxes on them. The internal revenue service takes a very simple approach to tips. It views all tips you make in your job as taxable income that must be reported and for which taxes must be paid. Put another way, the IRS has a simple but brutal view towards taxes Now tips come in different forms. Some are received directly from customers while others are automatically added to the customer’s bill. The IRS takes the position you must report and pay taxes on both amounts. This also includes taxes you earn through any group splitting where all tips are collected together and then split amongst the employees. On top of this, the IRS also takes the view that any non-cash tips such as tickets to something are also income that should be reported and taxes paid on. Put another way, the internal revenue services gets you coming and going. To make things a little more brutal, the internal revenue service requires you to take some steps in reporting tips. If your tips total $20 or more in any calendar month from a single job, you are supposed to report the total to the employer by the 10th day of the next month. The employer is then supposed to withhold federal income tax, social security and Medicare taxes from your paycheck. Keep in mind that the failure…

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Marriage and Taxes

By Richard Chapo Getting married is the greatest day for 50 percent of couples. The other 50 percent get divorced. Perhaps the marriage tax penalty has something to do with it. Family Values – Hardly For all the chatter from politicians about family values, it is ironic that the tax code actually penalizes people for getting married. At its heart, the tax code is designed to modify behavior. Deductions and credits are given in areas the politicians wish to promote and taken away in areas considered less positive. Home ownership is viewed as a good thing, so mortgage interest is deductible. Cigarettes are bad, so they are taxed like no tomorrow. If you buy this argument, one must wonder why married couples suffer under the tax code. A recent study found that by getting married, couples are forced to pay roughly $1,500 in additional taxes. Known as the marriage penalty, one must wonder what the government is up to. Is it trying to promote family values or not? The numbers would seem to indicate not. The marriage penalty is a nasty little development for newlyweds. The penalty occurs because married couples must pool their earnings when they report taxes. Typically, this means their pooled earnings move them into a higher tax bracket and they pay more taxes. For instance, assume husband makes $45,000 a year as does wife. As a married couple, their pooled income is $90,000 with the accompanying tax consequences. For really doomed couples, the combined income will…

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Using This Years Taxes To Save On Next Years Taxes

By Richard Chapo You just got done paying taxes or filing an extension and are grumpy. If you are smart, you will use this miserable event to save some cash for next year. Using This Years Taxes to Save On Next Years Taxes For most people, preparing and filing taxes is the equivalent of sticking a pin in a body part. It simply is not fun. Heck, it is not even amusing. One of the reasons is you inevitably find some part of the process where you wonder how you could possible not have more deductions or credits. You fully realize you should tweak your finances to maximize certain expense areas and, by God, you are definitely going to do it for next year. This admirable goal, much like a New Years Resolution, fades into antiquity after about a month. You should not let this happen! There is no better time than now to proactively plan for savings on next year’s taxes. Having just completed your taxes, you inherently know where you got hurt. Even if you do not, you inevitably felt like you paid more than your fair share. To avoid this, you need to do some tax planning. Stop groaning. Tax planning may sound boring, but it actually very exciting if you think about it the right way. If I told you a trip to Vegas would definitely result in $2,000 in your pocket, would you be excited to go? Of course you would. Well, tax planning has…

Read the rest of this entry