Posts Tagged ‘Taxes’

18 Financial Tips I Wish Someone Told Me When I Was Younger

Written by Sam on . Posted in Inspiration. 28569 views.


Sooner or later most of us will be caught saying or thinking “If I only knew then what I know now”. I started diving into specifics, but eventually settled on a list to get us thinking. Look for the series to continue with expanded topics upon each of the following 18 tips:
  1. Work smarter, not harder.  Follow an interest or passion.  Focus your efforts on working to develop a way of life, not just a job or position.  There will always be a company willing to trade you dollars for your time – pursue your interests and work toward making that your way of life.  Excellent read:  “Rework” by Jason Fried & David Heinemeier Hansson.
  2. Surround yourself with good people.  Good people are inspiring, trustworthy and ultimately great for business.  Not everyone fits into this category, but don’t be afraid to reach out and build relationships with those around you.
  3. Develop the habit of saving.  Much like brushing your teeth or wearing your seat belt, saving should be a habit.  You should feel guilty when you don’t do it  - it’s one of 10 easy things to increase your net worth in 10 years.

10 Easy Tricks to an Increased Net Worth in 10 Years

Written by Sam on . Posted in Education, Inspiration, Investing. 3681 views.

Of course it’s easiest to say “make more money and spend less”, but sometimes that’s not possible or even desirable.  Here are 10 tricks to increase your net worth without increasing your income:
  1. Auto-deduct from your paycheck.  It’s not necessarily bad to spend 100% of the paycheck you receive – just make sure your savings are taken out before you get it.  Most employers who allow for direct deposit allow you to specify multiple accounts.  This makes it easy for your living expenses to go into a checking account and a set amount to go directly into a separate savings account.  If this is not an option for you, automatic monthly transfers from checking to savings can also be effective.  $50 a check can add up quickly.  Recommended best-selling read:   The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business, by Charles Duhigg.
  2. Transfer, pay down, then eliminate your debt.  We all know that credit card interest rates are sky high.  If you’ve run up a high balance, consider transferring the balance to a new card (cancelling the old one) to take advantage of the lower, introductory rates.  Follow this up with paying off the balance, then allocating what you were paying in credit card bills to amounts you’re contributing to savings.
  3. Contribute to a Roth IRA account.  Most people do not realize that there is typically NOT a penalty to remove the funds you’ve contributed to a Roth IRA.  Since the government also allows for qualified contributions to be withdrawn for education, housing and medical, why not contribute (get the tax benefits) then withdraw down the road if you need to? See IRS Site for the complete list of qualified distributions*
  4. Pay extra mortgage principal.  A typical new mortgage payment is comprised mostly of interest ($1100 payment can be $960 interest, $140 principal).  An efficient trick is to pay extra principal each month to avoid paying interest on it in the future.  Paying an extra couple hundred bucks per month could allow you to pay your 30 year mortgage off in 15 years.

4 Keys to the New National 3.8% Real Estate Sales Tax

Written by Sam on . Posted in Education, Investing. 1052 views.

An often less talked about portion of the massive legislation known as ObamaCare is how the government is going to pay for it. The great majority of the bill pertains to matters that have nothing to do with healthcare. It may surprise you, but some of the needed revenue will come from the sale of real estate – kind of.

Effective January 1, 2013, a new 3.8% tax on investment income will be imposed. This tax does not affect all real estate transactions, only when certain conditions are met.

Here’s what you need to know from a capital gain/real estate perspective:

  1. Is your AGI greater than $200,000? The 3.8% tax is on the LESSER of your investment income amount or the amount in excess of Adjusted gross income (AGI) over $200,000 (Individual) or $250,000 (Couple). Therefore, if your AGI (which includes real estate sale gains) is less than $200k (or $250k) you are not affected by the new tax.
  2. Your AGI will include the sale of investment income (or real estate). Say you make $100k salary and sell your vacation home for a profit of $225k – your AGI will be $325k and you’ll be subject to the 3.8% tax on $125k ($325k-200k).
  3. You get a $500k deduction for the sale of your primary residence. If you sell your primary residence for a gain of $550k, you get to deduct the first $500k and are left with a gain of $50k to be added to your AGI.