(NC) As much as we may not want to think about taxes during the holiday season, they are around the corner. Steps you take now, before the year is up, can make a big difference to the taxes you owe or refund you receive.
Here are three simple steps to take before the new year to help you maximize your finances in the spring.
Get your files in order
As boring as record keeping is, it sure beats a frantic tax-time search for all your up-to-date details – especially if you run a business with employees. Tuck away physical receipts for big-ticket items or health expenses and consolidate online receipts like digital subscriptions. Watch for tax slips that come out in January and February.
Make your contributions
The earlier you contribute to your retirement, the more you can potentially set aside to lower your taxable income before filing time – and spreading it out helps keep your budget on track. If you keep funds in a tax-free savings account, contributions are counted based on the calendar year. They don’t affect your taxable income, but the year you put money in or take it out will affect your contribution room. Now is a good time to check where you stand.
Support the big picture – and yourself too
A donation of $10 or more to a registered charity allows you to claim a credit on the same year’s tax return, and therefore reduces your taxable income. So, it’s something to think about when planning ahead for tax time. Many organizations make it easy to help others, such as World Vision’s gift guide, which is filled with options to support education, gender equality and food security. Not only do you get a tax break, but you can make a difference in the lives of those in need.
Find more information at worldvision.com/gift