Don’t Pay More Taxes Than you Have To: Five Deductions and Credits to Know About

Written by admin on May 18th, 2011

Taxes… Say that word and many people will start to groan when they hear it …and with good reason. To begin with, paying annual taxes is usually a financial burden for most people. Each time you review your paycheck, you might feel cheated or abused, considering the federal income tax withholding amounts (let’s not even mention state taxes or Social Security or Medicare taxes).

There is a way to combat the tax-time doldrums. It may help to keep in mind that tax regulations include a lot of tax deductions for which you could be entitled. These tax deductions give you the benefit of not reporting specific economic benefits. Or they may allow you to deduct certain income expenditures or even directly from the cost of your tax bill.

Tax Deductions and Credits

Currently, there are five tax-advantaged items that exist and have been given preferential treatment under domestic tax regulations:

1. Some income is tax-free which means that you usually don’t have to report this income to the Internal Revenue Service. This income would be classified as tax exclusions or tax exemptions. Once you are sure that this is the case, you need not worry about taxes or reporting this income to the IRS.

2. Capital gains refer to any profit you make selling or trading property that you’ve held for a year or longer. This also includes regular stock dividends and stock mutual funds. These long-term gains are taxed at a lower tax than regular income such as your salary or interest from investments.

3. Tax-deferred earnings are income that is not taxed at the present time. However, you might amass a greater wealth as time passes, since your earnings are not being reduced by current taxes. However, that money will be eligible for taxation eventually.

4. Tax deductions are things you can take off of your income, thus reducing the amount of your income that is subject to taxation. There are currently two deduction classes: Those that are “above the line,” meaning they are subtracted right from the gross income, and the ones that that you can only claim if you prepare an itemized statement instead of the standard deduction (which we will explain later).

5. Tax credits are items that you can use for offsetting your tax payments. This occurs in a dollar-for-dollar exchange. Often, though, you’ll need to fill out a specific tax sheet for every credit you claim.

You can easily manage your taxes to decrease your yearly federal obligations.

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