While we’re all recovering from the Christmas weekend and preparing for New Year’s, there are other important issues to be handled this week.
Yes, the word we’re all avoiding is taxes.
Soon you’re W-2 form will arrive with a January check, and the yearly chore begins.
It’s the annual ritual, sorting through the government forms, going online for instructions and dragging out the file folders with receipts.
But you should know some things have changed this year, and from the taxpayer’s point of view, the changes aren’t good.
This is the last year for some deductions so get ready to grab them while you can.
Maureen Parkhill of Liberty Tax Service gave us the bad news.
“Teachers need to know that this year, 2011, will be the last year they can deduct their $250 for expenses that they pay out of pocket,” Parkhill said, “and that’s sad. Another thing that’s going away is the sales tax deduction. So if someone bought a car over Christmas, or is thinking about buying a car, go ahead and do it before Saturday. Even if someone was buying an air conditioner, a compressor or an expensive washer and dryer, any of those purchases need to be made before Saturday night.”
And there are only a few days to make some payments.
“If you are able to make a contribution to your IRA or your 401k,” she reminded KETK, “this will be the week to do it, especially your 401k, since you have until April 15th on the IRA.
If you are thinking about making any charitable contributions, you need to do that this week. If you are capable of making your January house payment by December 31st, you’ll have credit for it on your 2011 tax burden. Also if you do own a home you need to be sure your real estate taxes are paid. If you’re off from work, even if you’re enjoying yourself, you might enjoy yourself with your files and get your tax information together so that you’ll be ready when your W2’s and 1099’s come in.”