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Tax Returns are not just for Reporting Income and Paying your Taxes

We continue to stress that tax and financial planning go hand in hand and that tax returns are not just for paying and reporting your income and taxes. Your tax return can reveal a lot about your financial health and how to better plan for the future.

When we look at your returns, we look at the following items to help gain an understanding of your financial wellbeing and how we can better serve you.

Do you have dependents? How old are they?

If they are nearing college age you may need to consider how to pay for their education. Planning for this expense early will help you worry less because you will have an established strategy.

Do you work for any employer?

If working for an employer, are you taking advantage of any retirement plans/Health Savings Accounts/or other opportunities that have available to you? It is important to capitalize on what your employer has to offer.woman drawing on an ipad on the couch

Are you self-employed?

If so, we want to make sure you are maximizing your deductions. We also want to make sure you are aware of the various retirement options available to you as a self-employed individual that help plan for the future and possibly save taxes in the present.

Do you itemize your deductions, or take the standard deduction?

So many taxpayers that have itemized in the past are now taking the standard deduction based on tax law changes. It is still important to keep track of items that might be a part of your itemized deduction even if you do not benefit on your federal return. Many states have different rules, which mean you may get some benefit even if you do not on your federal forms.

Do you donate to charity?

This goes along with your itemized deductions. If you are taking the standard deduction, you may want to consider alternative ways to donate. You can consider a donor advised fund where you put in stock or cash in a lump sum in one year to benefit from an itemized deduction and then you can spread out your donation over multiple years to the charities of your choice. You can also look at making larger donations to charities every other year so that you can still itemize during certain years and get the tax benefit.

How much are you reporting in interest?

If you traditionally report higher interest amounts, maybe you need to consider other investment options. Those funds could potentially be put to better use in the market to build greater wealth for the future.

These are just a handful of the items we can review and analyze when it comes to your tax return that can help us guide you when it comes to your financial plan and future. Tom Curran's tax company HIPPO Tax Services embodies comprehensive service, consistent strategy and a congruent approach to your financial wellbeing.

To have your tax return reviewed, please contact us or call our Tax Manager Alexis Meeks directly at 518-391-4222 and she will assist you.