Archive for the tag 'telling tips'

Source: 401(K) 2012 / Flickr

Source: 401(K) 2012 / Flickr

Telling Tips is a series of articles from local experts to help you save money, make better decisions and plan for a better future.

Need your tax return information? Get it right here. If you are looking for your prior year tax information, you have three choices:

  1. A Tax Return Transcript: This shows most of the line items on your originally filed tax return, including any forms and schedules. It does not show any changes made to your tax return after filing. Cost: Nothing. Available for current and last three year.
  2. A Tax Account Transcript: This shows your marital status, type of filed return, adjusted gross income, taxable income, and any changes made to your tax return after filing. Cost: Nothing. Available for current and last three year.
  3. Your Tax Return: This is an exact copy of the tax return you filed, all attachments, and your W-2. Cost: $50 (down from $57). Available for current and past six years. Note that for anyone living in an area designated as a disaster area (i.e. Superstorm Sandy), there is no fee.

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Source: Federal Student Aid / Facebook

Source: Federal Student Aid / Facebook

Telling Tips is a series of articles from local experts to help you save money, make better decisions and plan for a better future.

The Simplified Needs Test (SNT) is question 34 on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form. The purpose of it is to determine whether assets will be counted or excluded in the Estimated Family Contribution (EFC) Calculation. The EFC represents the amount of money the government feels the student and family can afford to contribute toward his or her college education. Simply stated, the lower the number, the less you’re expected to pay. The best score possible is zero.

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Joseph Reisman's Halloween costume. Source: Skreened

Joseph Reisman’s Halloween costume. Source: Skreened

Telling Tips is a series of articles from local experts to help you save money, make better decisions and plan for a better future.

Boooooooooo!

The year is almost over. I hope you’re having a good year. First, the bad news: The price of chocolate is going up. Yep, over the past 12 months, cocoa butter prices have risen 70 percent.

Now, the good news: There’s still time for year-end tax planning. Don’t be scared — planning will not hurt you.

Do you have your costume?

Jean Claude Van Damme, Steven Seagal, and Arnold Schwarzenegger decide to go out trick-or-treating together for Halloween as historic musical composers. They go to a costume store.

Jean Claude sees a costume he likes. “I think I’ll go as Beethoven,” he announces.

Steven sees one that grabs his attention. “I’ll be Mozart.”

Arnold was having a tough time finding a costume, but finally he discovered one that appealed to him, and says, in a heavy Austrian accent: “I’ll be Bach!”

Happy Halloween!

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"Taxes are what we pay for a civilized society." -- Oliver Wendell Holmes. Source: Tim Evanson / Flickr

“Taxes are what we pay for a civilized society.” — Oliver Wendell Holmes. Source: Tim Evanson / Flickr

Telling Tips is a series of articles from local experts to help you save money, make better decisions and plan for a better future.

It’s autumn. It’s the end of the harvest season. Are you enjoying the lovely colors — orange, red, rust, gold, brown? Take the family and go apple or pumpkin picking. ‘Tis the season for carving pumpkins and making pumpkin bread and pie, and apple pie and cider.

Time for a reality check — here’s what’s new in taxes this week.

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Source: Turbotax.intuit.com

Source: Turbotax.intuit.com

Telling Tips is a series of articles from local experts to help you save money, make better decisions and plan for a better future.

It’s October, and even though there are 178 days between now and April 15, it’s never too early to mark your calendar so you can always be a step ahead with your personal finances and this year’s tax preparations. Here are a few reminders:

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Obama signs the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Source: Wikipedia

Obama signs the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Source: Wikipedia

Telling Tips is a series of articles from local experts to help you save money, make better decisions and plan for a better future.

Now that the Exchanges are operating, at least somewhat, I know there are a lot of questions. I will try to answer all of your questions. (Or try to find out from Nancy Pelosi.)

Oops. Lost $67 Million. If Found, Return To IRS.

To help pay for Obamacare, the IRS set aside $67 million. The only problem is that it’s lost. If you find it, it’s yours. The IRS has no intention of looking for it. They promise, however, that they will try to keep better record-keeping in the future.

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Source:  No Mommy's Perfect

Source: No Mommy’s Perfect

Telling Tips is a series of articles from local experts to help you save money, make better decisions and plan for a better future.

School will be back in session soon and, in order to dust off the summer cobwebs and get all you armchair CPAs up to speed with what’s doing in the world of taxes, here’s a pop quiz. The first 10 questions are true or false. The last 10 are multiple choice. No cheating!

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Source: DarwinsMoney.com

Source: DarwinsMoney.com

Telling Tips is a series of articles from local experts to help you save money, make better decisions and plan for a better future.

Even thought April 15 is 237 days away, it’s still never too late to get a head start on tax preparation. Here’s some helpful news you can use, courtesy of our own resident tax man.

Using Your Car for Business

When using your car for business, you must keep a very accurate mileage log, and the log must be recorded at the time of the usage.

To prove his usage, one Florida real estate agent documented his date, time, mileage, etc. in a diary he said he prepared every day. This was presented as proof of his 2008 expenses. The only problem was that there was an ‘order form’ for a new diary in the back pages. The order form was for a 2014 diary. Hmmm – time flies.

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Source: alancleaver_2000/Flickr

Telling Tips is a series of articles from local experts to help you save money, make better decisions and plan for a better future.

Make sure to put these helpful summer reminders on your financial “to do” list.

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Source: The Daily Hamster / Flickr

Source: The Daily Hamster / Flickr

Telling Tips is a series of articles from local experts to help you save money, make better decisions and plan for a better future.

The year may be half over, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a good time to think about taxes. If you’re like most, you’re probably going to get a refund come April. The average refund is more than $2,000. That’s a lot of money for a lot of people. But can’t you make better use of it now?

Here are some tax tips to keep in mind… because even though April is eight months away, it doesn’t hurt to get a head start on things.

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