Year-End Tax Planning Strategies


As we quickly approach the last quarter of 2014, we want to give you some tax planning strategies to help decrease your tax liability.**


A little planning can go a long way! Here’s an easy-to-read guide:


Max Retirement Plan Contributions

  • 401k’s – save up to $17,500 (+ $5,500 additional if over 50 years old)
  • Traditional IRA’s – save up to $5,000 (+ $1,000 additional if over 50 years old)


Max Health Savings Account Contributions

  • Single – save up to $3,300 (+ $1,000 additional if over 55 years old)
  • Family – save up to $6,550 (+ $1,000 additional if over 55 years old)
  • Remember contributions reduce your taxable income and account earnings are tax free!


“Bunch” Itemized Deductions

  • Prepay your February 2015 property tax installment in December 2014
  • Prepay your January 2015 mortgage payment by December 2014


Sell “Loser” Stocks

  • Get rid of those stocks that are worth less now than when you purchased them
  • Losses will offset other capital gains
  • You can deduct up to a $3,000 net loss per year


Donate To Charity

  • You’ve likely poured ice on your head for ALS, so why not continue to help out the charity of your choice!
  • If you are a “tither” on income as earned, prepay your 2015 tithes by December 2014


Consider Refinancing

  • Points paid on a previous refinance are fully deductible in the tax year of a new refinance
  • Rates are still at all-time lows!


Get Deductions For Your Hobby

  • Hobby-related expenses aren’t directly deductible, unless your hobby can be classified as a business
  • Business losses reduce other taxable income
  •  Click here for more info on how to turn your hobby into a business


Remember that any reductions in taxable income not only saves you taxes at your top rate bracket, but also helps you avoid phasing out of certain tax credits (i.e. – child tax credit, student loan interest deduction, education credits, etc.).


What tax planning strategies have you implemented in the past to lower your tax liability?


** Each situation should be analyzed individually. Alternative Minimum Tax rules may negate the impact of the strategies mentioned below. Most strategies mentioned help those who itemize deductions.


Chad Peshke is an experienced Financial Services Provider specializing in tax preparation, home loans and personal finance coaching. He holds a Bachelors Degree in Economics from the University of California in Santa Barbara and is licensed in tax preparation, loan origination, real estate and insurance. View all posts

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