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Best Year-End Tax Preparation Tips From Personal Finance Community

By Erik Folgate

I was about to write a post on year-end tax preparation tips, but then I saw that so many other PF bloggers had beat me to it, so I figured that instead of spewing out the same stuff as them, I would highlight some of the best tips from other bloggers.

From Bible Money Matters, he has 10 tax credits and deductions to consider:

Increase your retirement account contributions: Max out the contributions to your 401k, 403(b) or IRA to lower your taxable income. With an IRA you can contribute up to$5,000, $6,000 if you are 50 or older. For a 401k or 403(b) the contribution limit is $16,500 , or 22,000 if you’re 50 or older.

Million Dollar Journey has a nice list of year-end tax tips as well.

Buy your Supplies for Home Improvements. If you’re planning on doing home improvements in the new year, try to purchase some of your before year end. Why? To take advantage of the home renovation tax credit (HRTC). There are rumors that the HRTC will be continuing in the new year, but even so, you might as well take advantage of any 2009 space you have available.

Darwin’s Finance also provides a list of 7 year-end tax tips to save you money!

Sell your losers in your investment portfolio – You can deduct up to $3,000 per year in losses and even carry over losses in excess of that amount. If you were fortunate enough to have significant gains, make sure you don’t get burnt by the Wash Sale Rule by buying the same or equivalent investment again quickly.

Erik Folgate
Erik and his wife, Lindzee, live in Orlando, Florida with a baby boy on the way. Erik works as an account manager for a marketing company, and considers counseling friends, family and the readers of Money Crashers his personal ministry to others. Erik became passionate about personal finance and helping others make wise financial decisions after racking up over $20k in credit card and student loan debt within the first two years of college.

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  • http://www.ultimatemoneyblog.com Mrs. Money

    Great links. I’ve seen a lot of good tips from the pf network this year!

    • Casey

      Do you have an article on the HRTC? I did a lot of renovations this past year, and I have not heard of this (or at least I do not remember it). I would like to take advantage of this if I can!

    • Donna Kramer

      We are retired and on a low fixed income. Where is the best place to get our taxed done?

  • Karmella

    I did convince my dad to buy his new car on 12/31 instead of 1/2 (he was set on buying anyway, just a matter of timing).

    I am using this year and the tips to focus me on being organized this year, from the start, and actually trying to do some planning. The comments on the Million Dollar Journey post had some good tips for me on that.

    • Erik Folgate

      very good tip! If he was already going to buy it, better to get the tax advantages for 2009 and money back in his pocket come tax time!

  • http://deliverawaydebt.com Jeff

    Even though I’ve been paying down my debt, I tossed a little bit toward the 401K to help out with my taxes. I was going to wait to get a better start in 2010, but then figured I rather get a little kick in 2009 instead. Every little bit helps.

  • Nancy

    Well done on sharing this select info! There’s no use in “re-discovering the wheel” via needless duplication!

    • Erik Folgate

      Nancy, that was exactly my thought!

  • Mayra Cedillo

    I quit my old job earlier in the year, and thanks to tips in Remit Seth’s book I will teach you to be rich, I rolled over my 401(k) into an IRA account with Charles Schwab. I picked my stocks, and when I tied it over to a checking account with Schwab, I became eligible for some good benefits with my debit card. One benefit was free atm withdrawals from anywhere in the US, no matter which ATM I used. What the bank does is reimburse me monthly for any atm fees paid, and they do it automatically which is a huge advantage over Compass Bank’s send in receipts for reimbursement approach.

  • http://www.artificialrobot.com Sean

    Great links, I’m sure these will be coming in handy as all of the tax forms are just starting to roll in. I bought my first house last year, so I get to learn all about the interest deductions, otherwise I think my return is going to be pretty boring which is just fine by me. The last few years I’ve had all sorts of funky stuff with job changes and moving and state taxes. Glad to be back in TX where there isn’t any state income tax!

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