Saving for Education: 529 Plans

Brian SingletonBlog, Watch Your Wallet

Many parents are looking for ways to save for their child’s education and a 529 Plan is an excellent way to do so. Even better, is that thanks to the passage of tax reform legislation in 2017, 529 plans are now available to parents wishing to save for their child’s K-12 education as well as college or vocational school. You may open a Section 529 plan in any state, and there are no income restrictions for the individual opening the … Read More

Home Equity Loan Interest Still Deductible (Sometimes)

Brian SingletonBlog, Watch Your Wallet

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, enacted December 22, 2017, suspends from 2018 until 2026 the deduction for interest paid on home equity loans and lines of credit, unless they are used to buy, build or substantially improve the taxpayer’s home that secures the loan. Under the new law, for example, interest on a home equity loan used to build an addition to an existing home is typically deductible, while interest on the same loan used to pay personal … Read More

5 Easy Ways to Lower your Self-Employment Tax Bill

Brian SingletonBlog

If you're like most small business owners, you're always looking for ways to lower your self-employment taxable income. Here are five ways to do just that. Deducting the Cost of a Home Computer If you purchased a computer and use it for work-related purposes, you can take advantage of the Section 179 expense election, which allows you to write off new equipment in the year it was purchased if it is used for business more than 50 percent of the ... Read More

Using a Car for Business: New Rules under TCJA

Brian SingletonBlog, Watch Your Wallet

Many of the tax provisions under tax reform were favorable to small business owners including those relating to using a car for business. Here’s what you need to know. 1. Section 179 Expense Deduction If you bought a new car in 2018 and use it more 50 percent for business use, you can take advantage of the Section 179 expense deduction when you file your 2018 tax return. Under Section 179 you can immediately deduct (rather than depreciating) the cost … Read More

Selling your Small Business

Brian SingletonBlog, Watch Your Wallet

Selling a small to medium-sized business is a complex venture, and many business owners are not aware of the tax consequences. If you’re thinking about selling your business the first step is to consult a competent tax professional. You will need to make sure your financials in order, obtain an accurate business valuation to determine how much your business is worth (and what the listing price might be) and develop a tax planning strategy to minimize capital gains and other … Read More

2017 Corporate Year-End Tax Info and Checklist

Brian SingletonBlog, Watch Your Wallet

Checklist for preparing your records to conform with IRS compliance requirements. How organized is your paperwork? For your corporation to be complete, you need a corporate record book, complete with corporate applications, corporate charter, bylaws, stock certificates and minutes of meetings. These items are all evidence that your business is a legitimate corporation. Do you loan your corporation money? You must be careful to document debt. Short term unwritten advances of less than $10,000 are acceptable if you treat them … Read More

Traditional IRAs vs. Roth IRAs in 2017

Brian SingletonBlog, Watch Your Wallet

Withdrawals from Roth IRAs may be taken out penalty and tax-free before age 59 1/2 as long as they are contributions (not earnings). Withdrawals that are earnings are subject to the same 10 percent penalty tax as traditional IRAs. There is an exception for qualified first-time home-buyers: A maximum of $10,000 of Roth IRA earnings may be withdrawn penalty-free to pay for qualified first-time home-buyer expenses as long as at least five tax years have passed since your initial contribution.Withdrawals … Read More

Energy Tax Credits Expire at the end of 2016

Brian SingletonBlog, Watch Your Wallet

Certain energy-efficient home improvements can cut your energy bills and save you money at tax time; however, these energy-related tax credits expire at the end of 2016. Here are some key facts that you should know about home energy tax credits: Nonbusiness Energy Property Credit Part of this credit is worth 10 percent of the cost of certain qualified energy-saving items you added to your main home last year. This may include items such as insulation, windows, doors, and roofs. … Read More

Tax Tips for Separated or Divorced Individuals

Brian SingletonBlog, Watch Your Wallet

If you are recently separated or divorced, taxes may be the last thing on your mind; however, these events can have a big impact on your wallet at tax time. Alimony, or a name or address change, are just a few items you may need to consider. Here are a few key tax tips to keep in mind: 1. Child Support. Child support payments are not deductible and if you received child support, it is not taxable. 2. Alimony Paid. … Read More