No Fooling Us: 5 Tax Benefits to Boost Your Tax Refund

Tax Deductions and Credits Stocksy_txpa6c6aa6bvvt000_Medium_708865

Tax season is almost over, and you might be wondering if there’s anything you’re forgetting. Though TurboTax has you covered and asks you simple questions to determine your tax deductions and credits, it’s good to know some common ones so you’re prepared! So here are five tax deductions for you to take advantage of!

Contribute to a Traditional IRA
You have until tax day to open and make a contribution towards a Traditional IRA. A contribution to a Traditional IRA is one of the few things you can still do to lower your taxes after the year has ended and still make an impact on your taxes you are filing now, so take advantage of it if you haven’t yet done so. When you make the contribution, make sure to indicate that it is for last year or your broker will default to applying it towards this year.  You can contribute up to $5,500($6,500 if 50 and over)

Don’t Forget Those Miscellaneous Expenses!
There are a series of expenses that, on their own, don’t often amount to much. However, if you combine them all and they exceed 2% of your adjusted gross income (AGI), you may be able to deduct them as miscellaneous itemized deduction. There are three types of expenses that fall into this miscellaneous expense category: unreimbursed employee expenses, job search expenses and tax software expenses.

Uninsured Casualty, Disaster, and Theft Losses
If you suffered any casualty loss as a result of an unusual event like a flood, fire, or some other unforeseen event, you may be able to deduct the loss. If you suffered a theft of property from your home, you could deduct the fair market value of the items stolen. Keep in mind: when making the claim, you have to deduct any insurance payments you received associated with the loss.

Make Any Bad Investments?
If you have capital losses, where you sold an investment at less than the purchase price, you can deduct up to $3,000 of that loss and have it offset your ordinary income. To do this, you have to realize the loss by selling the investment. After you realize the loss, you need to offset it with any previously realized capital gains. If you still have losses, you can deduct them. If you have greater than $3,000 in losses, you claim the $3,000 and carry forward the rest for use next year.

Charitable Giving Can Give Back
We all know contributions to charitable organizations are tax deductible and our donation of time is not tax deductible, but did you know that if you drove your car for charity you can deduct 14 cents per mile driven? Anything you may have purchased out of your pocket for a charitable organization also may be tax deductible. If the organization was having an event and you purchased balloons for them, remember the receipts because you may be able to deduct that purchase as a charitable contribution. If your contributions exceed $250, get the organization to give you a written document acknowledging your contributions.

No fooling, these tax deductions can really boost your tax refund, so don’t forget to claim them if you can!

Don’t worry about knowing tax rules and forms. TurboTax will ask you simple questions and give you the tax deductions and credits you deserve based on your answers.  Have a tax question?  You can connect live via one-way video to a credentialed CPA or enrolled agent to get your toughest tax questions answered with TurboTax SmartLook

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