5 Personal Tax Tips we can look at as we close out 2013

ERock Photo - uncle sam 3.3.20121) Check your withholding and boost it in December if necessary. You must take a look at where you stand in your particular case. Some folks actually should advance a payment in December to lower the penalty for underpayment. To cover yourself you should advance 110% of your 2012 total tax. This is especially true for folks earning more money in 2013.

2) Make catch-up 401(k) contributions. Contact your local Human Resources Department to get the procedure for maxing out your account for 2013. The deadline is 12/31/2013. This is different than funding a personal Ira or Roth IRA, where the deadline to make a contribution for tax year 2013 is actually 4.15.2014.

3) If you can afford it, take advantage of the gift tax exclusion. For 2013, anyone can give anyone $14,000 per person without any gift tax consequences. This way you can give away small shares of your portfolio yearly and avoid any future gift tax on the items. This can be a large estate tax saving tool and should be looked at in the context of your entire plan.

4) Some will potentially want to sell losing stocks as the year end comes upon us, and some will want to sell winning stocks depending on the particular situation. Many will want to take advantage of gains before year end as they may be in a top tax bracket and be potentially exposed to higher capital gains rates for 2014 and beyond. Or some may sell $3,000 of losing investments in excess of gains at year’s end to take advantage of the tax savings on the 2013 tax return. Please consult a qualified advisor to help you if you don’t understand this process.

5) One deduction I never like to see is the medical deduction. However it does help to lump your medical deductions if there is going to be a year that you have large medical expenses. You can prepay doctors or dentists if you are already over the threshold in order to make sure you get the largest possible deduction.

Listen to Win Damon and I chat about 5 tax tips to end 2013 below.

 

With more than 23 years of experience as a credentialed tax professional, Stu Steinberg brings a broad depth of knowledge to his work. Stu founded Erock Tax to help provide tax strategies to individuals, families and small businesses. He also uses his CPA expertise to help each client navigate their long-term debt and mortgage, gaining them the best deals and rates possible. Stu is passionate about empowering his clients through education about their tax health. He is highly energetic and brings a sense of optimism, creative problem-solving and a deep level of commitment to every Erock client.

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