Jun 132015
 
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We are quickly approaching the middle of the 2015 tax year.  You should know how to pay far less taxes this year and every future year for that matter.

If you paid too much in taxes last year, you do not want to miss this web briefing!  I don’t recommend training unless it’s something I know you will get valuable information from that will improve your financial situation.

In this webinar, you will learn:

  • Research by Small Business Tax Strategies concluded “Small Businesses OVERPAY the IRS by an average of $11,638.”
  • WHY is nearly EVERY small business owner OVER-PAYING their TAXES???

Surprisingly, the answer is not complicated.

If you’re paying your taxes and there is a line (or several lines) on the tax forms asking for your deductions, but you don’t know about any deductions, you will OVERPAY your taxes.

That’s why nearly all small business owners are overpaying their taxes – they are completely unaware of some major tax deductions they can
easily qualify for.

There is no reason the IRS should be able to suck tons of extra cash out of you just because they have hidden important tax deduction information from you.

The truth is, small business owners get more tax deductions than any other category of taxpayer in America, bar none!

Isn’t it time you knew what they are?

TOMORROW, Sunday, June 14th, 2015, my friend Ron Mueller will reveal ALL of the SIX BIGGEST deductions, and he’ll tell you exactly how to qualify for all of them.

GET THE DETAILS TOMORROW, Sunday, 6/14/2015, DURING A FREE WEB BRIEFING

Learning and using just SIX specific tax deductions, that ONLY small and home based business owners can qualify for, can easily slash this year’s taxes by up to $3,000 to $5,000 or more.

He will conduct this live, FREE web briefing ONE FINAL TIME, tomorrow, Sunday, 6/14/2015.

6:00 pm Pacific time
7:00 pm Mountain time
8:00 pm Central time
9:00 pm Eastern time
To REGISTER for SUNDAY, Click HERE

After this web briefing, you will be able to immediately:

  • STOP OVERPAYING Your TAXES!
  • SLASH them to the MINIMUM required by LAW!
  • Keep More of YOUR Money in YOUR Pocket!

WARNING: If you have a small or home based business – even on a very part-time basis – and you are NOT using these SIX specific deductions, you are very likely OVERPAYING your TAXES by AT LEAST $3,000, and probably even more.

After the webinar, feel free to contact me with additional questions or for more information related to how to pay far less taxes this year.

Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links on this blog are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I might receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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Mar 132015
 
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Standard Deduction

For tax year 2015, all taxpayers will see a slight bump in the standard deduction over the 2014 amounts. The standard deduction rises to $6,300 for single and married filing separately filing statuses, up from $6,200 for tax year 2014.  Married filing jointly filers will see an increase in the standard deduction to $12,600, up from $12,400 for tax year 2014. The standard deduction for heads of household rises to $9,250, up from $9,100.

The decision to itemize deductions will depend on whether or not the deduction exceeds the standard deduction amounts.  However, for married filing jointly taxpayers, if one spouse itemizes, the other spouse must also itemize.

For more information and assistance with determining the amount of your standard deduction, go to How much is my standard deduction.

Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links on this blog are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I might receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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Dec 102014
 
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The new standard mileage rates for 2015 are now available.

The Internal Revenue Service today issued the 2015 optional standard mileage rates used to calculate the deductible costs of operating an automobile for business, charitable, medical or moving purposes.

Beginning on Jan. 1, 2015, the standard mileage rates for the use of a car, van, pickup or panel truck will be:

  • 57.5 cents per mile for business miles driven, up from 56 cents in 2014
  • 23 cents per mile driven for medical or moving purposes, down half a cent from 2014
  • 14 cents per mile driven in service of charitable organizations

The standard mileage rate for business is based on an annual study of the fixed and variable costs of operating an automobile, including depreciation, insurance, repairs, tires, maintenance, gas and oil. The rate for medical and moving purposes is based on the variable costs, such as gas and oil. The charitable rate is set by law.

Taxpayers always have the option of claiming deductions based on the actual costs of using a vehicle rather than the standard mileage rates.

It’s important to note, however, that a taxpayer cannot go from using actual expenses, including accelerated depreciation and the Section 179 deduction, to the standard mileage rate method.  Also, the standard mileage rate is not available to fleet owners (more than four vehicles used simultaneously). Details on these and other special rules are in Revenue Procedure 2010-51, the instructions to Form 1040 and various online IRS publications including Publication 17, Your Federal Income Tax.

Besides the standard mileage rates, Notice 2014-79, posted today on IRS.gov, also includes the basis reduction amounts for those choosing the business standard mileage rate, as well as, the maximum standard automobile cost that may be used in computing an allowance under a fixed and variable rate plan.

Be reminded that while using the standard mileage rate is simpler, it still requires some record keeping.  Proper documentation should be maintained including the date, the origin and destination of travel and the purpose of the trip.  This documentation is required when answering the question related having a written record of the mileage claimed for tax return purposes.

For more information or assistance with standard mileage rates for 2015, feel free to contact me via the form below:

Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links on this blog are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I might receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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Nov 262014
 
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Charitable Contributions For Tax Year 2014

Individuals and businesses making charitable contributions for tax year 2014 should be reminded that several important tax law provisions have taken effect in recent years. Some of the changes taxpayers should keep in mind include:

Rules for Charitable Contributions of Clothing and Household Items

Household items include furniture, furnishings, electronics, appliances and linens. Clothing and household items donated to charity generally must be in good used condition or better to be tax-deductible. A clothing or household item for which a taxpayer claims a deduction over $500 does not have to meet this standard if the taxpayer includes a qualified appraisal of the item with the return.

Donors must get a written acknowledgement from the charity for all gifts worth $250 or more. It must include, among other things, a description of the items contributed.

Guidelines for Monetary Donations

A taxpayer must have a bank record or a written statement from the charity in order to deduct any donation of money, regardless of amount. The record must show the name of the charity and the date and amount of the contribution. Bank records include canceled checks, and bank, credit union and credit card statements. Bank or credit union statements should show the name of the charity, the date, and the amount paid. Credit card statements should show the name of the charity, the date, and the transaction posting date.

Donations of money include those made in cash or by check, electronic funds transfer, credit card and payroll deduction. For payroll deductions, the taxpayer should retain a pay stub, a Form W-2 wage statement or other document furnished by the employer showing the total amount withheld for charity, along with the pledge card showing the name of the charity.

These requirements for the deduction of monetary donations do not change the long-standing requirement that a taxpayer obtain an acknowledgment from a charity for each deductible donation (either money or property) of $250 or more. However, one statement containing all of the required information may meet both requirements.

Reminders

The IRS offers the following additional reminders to help taxpayers plan their holiday and year-end gifts to charity:

  • Qualified charities. Check that the charity is eligible. Only donations to eligible organizations are tax-deductible. Select Check, a searchable online tool available on IRS.gov, lists most organizations that are eligible to receive deductible contributions. In addition, churches, synagogues, temples, mosques and government agencies are eligible to receive deductible donations. That is true even if they are not listed in the tool’s database.
  • Year-end gifts. Contributions are deductible in the year made. Thus, donations charged to a credit card before the end of 2014 count for 2014, even if the credit card bill isn’t paid until 2015. Also, checks count for 2014 as long as they are mailed in 2014.
  • Itemize deductions. For individuals, only taxpayers who itemize their deductions on Form 1040 Schedule A can claim deductions for charitable contributions. This deduction is not available to individuals who choose the standard deduction. This includes anyone who files a short form (Form 1040A or 1040EZ). A taxpayer will have a tax savings only if the total itemized deductions (mortgage interest, charitable contributions, state and local taxes, etc.) exceed the standard deduction. Use the 2014 Form 1040 Schedule A to determine whether itemizing is better than claiming the standard deduction.
  • Record donations. For all donations of property, including clothing and household items, get from the charity, if possible, a receipt that includes the name of the charity, date of the contribution, and a reasonably-detailed description of the donated property. If a donation is left at a charity’s unattended drop site, keep a written record of the donation that includes this information, as well as the fair market value of the property at the time of the donation and the method used to determine that value. Additional rules apply for a contribution of $250 or more.
  • Special Rules. The deduction for a car, boat or airplane donated to charity is usually limited to the gross proceeds from its sale. This rule applies if the claimed value is more than $500. Form 1098-C or a similar statement, must be provided to the donor by the organization and attached to the donor’s tax return.

If the amount of a taxpayer’s deduction for all non-cash contributions is over $500, a properly completed Form 8283 must be submitted with the tax return.

IRS.gov has additional information on charitable giving, including:

For more information regarding charitable contributions for tax year 2014 or assistance with filing your 2014 income tax return, complete the form below. Someone from my office will get in touch with you within 24 business hours.

Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links on this blog are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I might receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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Mar 282014
 
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Itemized vs. Standard Deductions: Six Tips to Help You Choose

When you file your tax return, you usually choose to itemize your deductions or take the standard deduction. Before you choose, it’s a good idea to figure your deductions using both methods. Then choose the one that allows you to pay the lower amount of tax. The one that results in the higher deduction amount often gives you the most benefit.

Here are six tips to help you choose:

1. Figure your itemized deductions. Add up deductible expenses you paid during the year. Deductible expenses as itemized deductions include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Home mortgage interest
  • State and local income taxes or sales taxes (but not both)
  • Real estate and personal property taxes
  • Gifts to charities
  • Casualty or theft losses
  • Unreimbursed medical expenses
  • Unreimbursed employee business expenses

Special rules and limits apply. Visit IRS.gov and refer to Publication 17, Your Federal Income Tax for more details.

2. Know your standard deduction. If you don’t itemize, your basic standard deduction for 2013 depends on your filing status:

  • Single $6,100
  • Married Filing Jointly $12,200
  • Head of Household $8,950
  • Married Filing Separately $6,100
  • Qualifying Widow(er) $12,200

Your standard deduction is higher if you’re 65 or older or blind. If someone can claim you as a dependent, that can limit the amount of your deduction.

3. Check the exceptions. Some people don’t qualify for the standard deduction and therefore should itemize. This includes married couples who file separate returns and one spouse itemizes.

4. Use the IRS’s ITA tool. Visit IRS.gov and use the Interactive Tax Assistant tool to help determine your standard deduction.

5. File the right forms. To itemize your deductions, use Form 1040 and Schedule A, Itemized Deductions. You can take the standard deduction on Forms 1040, 1040A or 1040EZ.

6. File Electronically. You may be eligible for free, brand-name software to prepare and e-file your tax return. IRS Free File will do the work for you. Free File software will help you determine if you should itemize and file the right tax forms. It will do the math and e-file your return – all for free. Otherwise, you may file electronically with commercial software, or through a paid preparer.

Have a more complex tax situation and need a paid preparer?  Contact me below:

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Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links on this blog are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I might receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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Jan 032014
 
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How many of these expired tax breaks affect your tax situation? This is becoming an annual tradition of sorts. Every year, there are a raft of “temporary” tax breaks, credits, and deductions that expire on Dec. 31. Lawmakersusually plan on extending them. But they don’t always get to it on time. Click on the link below to read the full article.

From NASCAR to wind power: Congress just let 55 tax breaks expire.

Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links on this blog are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I might receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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Oct 302013
 
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This is an excellent article explaining why you should keep business and personal expenses separate.

In addition, the cost of tax preparation is greatly reduced if your records are in good order. Tax preparers are being held to higher standards (much needed in the industry) and must spend more time to ensure that taxpayer records substantiate the information reported on the tax return.

Why You Should Keep Business and Personal Expenses Separate | Entrepreneur.com.

It is quite easy to set up a simple system to maintain records for tax purposes. Feel free to contact me if you need help with setting up a system so that you can keep your business and personal expenses separate.

Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links on this blog are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I might receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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Sep 142013
 
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Tax deductions for a home based business were passed by Congress to spark economic stimulus of the largest and strongest segment of the United States economy, small business.  A downturn in the economy, which is responsible for the majority of employee layoffs, is a primary reason every taxpayer should own and operate a home based business.  The following video illustrates the impact taxes have on a taxpayer’s financial situation and why it’s important to invest in your financial future and security by owning your own home based business.

 

Request your copy of the Home Based Business Tax Savings CD below:

 

Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links on this blog are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I might receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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Jul 232013
 
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The Internal Revenue Service recently announced a simplified option that many owners of home-based businesses and some home-based workers may use to figure their deductions for the business use of their homes.

In tax year 2010, the most recent year for which figures are available, nearly 3.4 million taxpayers claimed deductions for business use of a home (commonly referred to as the home office deduction).

The new optional deduction, capped at $1,500 per year based on $5 a square foot for up to 300 square feet, will reduce the paperwork and record keeping burden on small businesses by an estimated 1.6 million hours annually.

“This is a common-sense rule to provide taxpayers an easier way to calculate and claim the home office deduction,” said Acting IRS Commissioner Steven T. Miller. “The IRS continues to look for similar ways to combat complexity and encourages people to look at this option as they consider tax planning in 2013.”

The new option provides eligible taxpayers an easier path to claiming the home office deduction. Currently, they are generally required to fill out a 43-line form (Form 8829) often with complex calculations of allocated expenses, depreciation and carryovers of unused deductions. Taxpayers claiming the optional deduction will complete a significantly simplified form.

Though homeowners using the new option cannot depreciate the portion of their home used in a trade or business, they can claim allowable mortgage interest, real estate taxes and casualty losses on the home as itemized deductions on Schedule A. These deductions need not be allocated between personal and business use, as is required under the regular method.

Business expenses unrelated to the home, such as advertising, supplies and wages paid to employees are still fully deductible.

Current restrictions on the home office deduction, such as the requirement that a home office must be used regularly and exclusively for business and the limit tied to the income derived from the particular business, still apply under the new option.

The new simplified option is available starting with the 2013 return most taxpayers file early in 2014. Further details on the new option can be found in Revenue Procedure 2013-13, posted on IRS.gov. Revenue Procedure 2013-13 is effective for taxable years beginning on or after January 1, 2013.  (Credit: IRS Newswire)

IRS webinar on business use of your home

I love collaborating with those who are inspired or who want to be inspired. If you are interested in starting your own home based business, leave a comment and I will get in touch with you as soon as possible.

Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links on this blog are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I might receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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