Top Tips to Prepare for Tax Season
Happy New Year! It’s a new year, a new you, and a new time to do things differently—like your taxes. Tax-filing season is officially here, and there are many things you can do to be prepared and organized. Here are a few simple tips that can help you save time, stress, and money:
- Double-check your paycheck – If you haven’t checked the withholding amount on your pay stub lately, now is the time to make sure you’re deducting the right amount.
- Decide who will prepare your taxes – Major life-changing events such as career, marriage, and death can make taxes more complicated, so it’s important to hire the right tax professional to handle your taxes.
- Ensure beneficiary designations are up to date – It may not matter today, but down the road, it’ll help minimize the taxes your beneficiaries and heirs pay on your assets after you die.
- Max out retirement plan contributions – The money you put in your tax-deferred accounts reduces your taxable income and your tax bill while growing until you need the money in retirement.
- Shield yourself from tax scams – Do not respond to phone calls or emails from anyone claiming to be from the IRS or the U.S. Treasury—those organizations will never call you on the phone.
- Consider “bunching” deductions – This process is achieved by pushing deductible expenses into the same calendar year to exceed thresholds and allow you to itemize tax deductions.
- Consider converting traditional IRAs to Roth IRAs – These withdrawals aren’t considered income for federal tax purposes, and you don’t have to take RMDs from them every year. (Note that when you convert, it’s taxable income, which will raise your tax bill for that year).
Preparing for taxes can seem overwhelming. It pays to stay organized during this time. As your dedicated team, we’re committed to your financial success. Contact us and let us guide you in getting the most out of your tax return.