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Retiring Soon? Don’t Forget Tax Implications

By Jason Alderman If your retirement is not far off you’ve probably already started to estimate what your living expenses will be after the regular paychecks stop. Most would-be retirees remember to include routine expenses like housing (rent or mortgage), medical bills and prescriptions, insurance premiums, transportation – even food and entertainment. But don’t forget to factor in taxes, which can have a substantial impact on your cost of living, …Read More

Income Tax Identity Theft

By Jana Castanon Be Aware Now Identity Theft. You know what it is. You have heard ads, news reports, and warnings on ways to protect yourself. You probably have a firewall on your computer, are more cautious when you are using your credit or debit cards, and more mindful when you are giving out personal information. But, are you protecting yourself from the fastest growing area of identity theft – income tax …Read More

What To Do With That Tax Refund?

By Sara Gilbert The average tax refund last year was just under $3,000, and that amount is expected to be about the same for tax returns being filed now. For many of us money and expenses can be a constant concern.  But, if you are expecting a nice refund this year try to use that money to alleviate some of your money concerns.  Here are some ideas to consider.  There is no …Read More

Should You Hire a Tax Preparer?

By Jason Alderman The US tax code grows more complicated every year and currently spans thousands of pages – even government experts can’t agree exactly how long it is. So it’s not surprising that millions of Americans hire professional tax preparers to complete their returns. Relinquishing the onerous task of calculating your taxes to a professional may save you time and give peace of mind – they know more about …Read More

7 Money Smart Waysto Spend Your Tax Return

By Malcolm Johannessen Tax time can be a nice time of year for many struggling homeowners. Playing catch up or getting ahead can be far more comforting in the long term than that flat screen TV. Whether you’re expecting $700 or $7000, spending your tax returns wisely can be a real difference maker for the rest of the year. Knowing how much is coming in can really help to pinpoint …Read More

Important Tax Tips

By Mark Foster Few things in life are certain, but two things are – death and taxes. Last year’s average federal tax refund was approximately $3,000. It’s all too easy to spend a refund on various fun things or odds and ends so it is wise to have a plan for prioritizing where the refund money ought to go. Some practical goals might include knocking down some debt and building …Read More

Income Tax Preparation: How to ChooseReputable Tax Preparers and Avoid Scams

By Barb Miller It’s tax preparation time of year! And for those Americans who expect a refund, the tax season is heating up. But before you hurry out to get your taxes done do your homework to make sure your tax “professional” is not out to scam you. Both the IRS and Better Business Bureau warn taxpayers against using preparers who claim they can get you a bigger refund than …Read More

How Housing Counseling Could Help You

By Lauralynn  Schueckler Whether you are thinking of buying your own home or are already a homeowner, housing counseling can offer valuable help when you need it most. It is a common misconception to believe that housing counseling is only for people whose mortgages are underwater or those who have bad credit.  For those who are interested in becoming a homeowner, housing counselors can offer some compelling arguments to support the …Read More

‘Innocent Spouse Relief’ Protects Against Tax Fraud

By Jason Alderman I’ll wager that when most brides and grooms utter the phrase, “For better or for worse,” the “worse” they’re imagining probably involves situations like getting laid off or a prolonged family illness – not being the victim of tax fraud perpetrated by a current or former spouse. Married couples typically file joint tax returns because it lets them take advantage of certain tax credits and other benefits …Read More

Choosing a Financial Advisor – Part 2

 By Gary Silverman Investment advisor, financial planner, financial advisor, stockbroker, registered investment advisor, insurance agent, retirement planning specialist, personal financial specialist…what the heck do all these mean and what do they all do? Heck if I know. You see, some of the designations above require specific licenses, some infer a certain level of expertise, and some don’t have any requirements to them at all. Instead of going through a very …Read More