End of Year Tax Tips for 2019Brian Jang ON December 22, 2019
With the end of the year nearly upon us, it is a good idea to start planning for tax time. By preparing now, you will not only save yourself time and effort later, you can also get the maximum possible refund. But you will need to act before December 31st.
Here are some tax tips for the year end.
Many of us have the good habit of hanging on to receipts that can be claimed on our returns. But unfortunately, we may also have the bad habit of simply stuffing them in an envelope, rather than organizing them.
Dig out those receipts and start going through them. There are some commonly overlooked items that you should be including that can get you some money back. These include medical expenses and moving expenses.
Medical expenses can be easy to forget. You may also have lost some of your receipts over the course of the year. However, in most cases, pharmacies will reprint your prescription receipts when asked to do so. You should also be able to do this for your receipts from your doctor, dentist, or any specialist that you see. Also, worth remembering is that if you are required to go out of town to seek a specialist, you are able to claim your travel expenses.
Moving expenses can be claimed if you are required to move 40 km or more for the sake of either school or work. As with other receipts, these should be possible to reprint; simply ask the movers that you employed.
If you made any charitable donations, these can be included as well. If you are missing a receipt, check your email, as many charitable organizations provide email receipts.
Organize Everyone Else
One person in the family tends to handle the taxes for everyone. If that is the case in your family, then once you have prepared all your own documents, it’s time to get everyone else organized. As bad as it might be to gather all your paperwork at the last minute, imagine doing it for everyone else.
This also presents the opportunity to help others learn how to do their own taxes. Do you have a child who will be moving away from home soon? Teaching them how to prepare and file their own return now can save them time and money down the road.
Guesstimate for a Preview of What’s to Come
Unless your situation has changed significantly compared to last year, you are looking at tax rates like what you have already experienced. Why not use that experience to roughly sketch out what your return is likely to be? You can take all the information that you currently have and estimate roughly what you can expect.
This can benefit you by giving you advance warning of an amount to pay so that you can plan to put that money aside. Alternately, if you appear to be getting a refund, you can start looking forward to how to use it.
Make Full Use of Your Benefits
If you have purchases to make, now may be the best time. Make your purchases before the year ends in order to include them on your return. This is a good time to refill prescriptions, make a charitable donation, or pick up supplies if you own a small business.
As is usually the case, preparing in advance can give you much better results than a last-minute hustle. Maximize your return by preparing what you can before December 31st.