Tax season is more than just rifling through papers and shaking your head. It’s an opportunity to renegotiate the previous year so that you can be more prepared in the new one. Tax season can also serve as a yearly reminder to make sure you and your business are in check and healthy enough to keep going for another year. [Read more...]
Yes, folks. You heard it. I just wrote a check for 3,500 smackaroos…and it wasn’t for anything awesome like a vacation to Aruba or a hot tub for my back deck. Unfortunately, the $3,500 check I just wrote was the June 15th installment of my personal income taxes. What’s even worse is that the $3,500 I just paid in is ON TOP of the hundreds of dollars we’ve been withholding from Greg’s paychecks every month. Have you ever heard the saying “mo’ money, mo’ problems?” Although I’m only making a moderate salary as a freelancer, I’m still feeling slightly resentful about the money I just paid in. When I think of how many freelance jobs I did to earn $3,500, my brain actually hurts. That’s a lot of freaking jobs, people! Becoming self-employed made me feel like a rebel without a cause, but paying income taxes makes me feel like I’m not really the one in charge. I no longer have a boss, but I’m still a slave to the man…..and I don’t like it at all.
However, I do think that it’s weird that I’ve never felt angry about paying taxes before. After all, I’ve been paying income taxes for over fifteen years. And honestly, I hadn’t thought much of it until now. So, why does writing a check for my taxes feel so different? [Read more...]
According to the Internal Revenue Service, the average tax return in the U.S. in 2012 was about $2,700. For most people, 2,700 bucks is a significant amount of money. And in recent weeks, I’ve seen multiple Facebook posts proclaiming the giant windfall of cash that people were so darn excited to have. ”I spent my tax refund on a flat screen TV!” “I can’t wait to get my tax refund and buy some new furniture!” Ummm…I don’t get it. It’s your money. You didn’t win the lottery. You just spent your own money on stuff, right? But I digress.
I’ve often asked myself why anyone would want to forgo that much money out of their paycheck throughout the year. I am one greedy bastard, and I try to squeeze all of the money out of mine that I possibly can. On the other hand, I really do think it’s more complicated than that. I, myself, have even had a difficult time estimating what my taxes will be in any given year. Ours can be complicated and include variable items like rental income, investment income, and the often unpredictable freelance income. A few years ago, we got back nearly $3,500 in our federal tax refund. Horrified, we changed our withholdings immediately. Even after making some changes, we still got back around $1,200 this year. Since we are free of consumer debt and have a hefty emergency fund, we chose to throw our tax refund into our vacation fund. Here are some other wise uses for your tax refund: [Read more...]
Hey kids. Uncle Greg here. Today, I want to go ahead and squash all those silly fun-loving dreams you have. I’m tired of all this Spring Break tomfoolery. I am sick of all of this YOLO nonsense. We’ve gone soft here girls. All of us. Excitement does not fun make. It is my job to remind all of you Ray-Ban wearing, high-rolling ninnies that the party can’t last forever. We need to get you back – back on the road to being a stingy badass!
“But Uncle Greg, how can we possibly have fun if we aren’t bingeing on vacations and purging our hard-earned dollars?” Easy. There is no fun like the enjoyment you get from saving money.
The time is now to put aside our highfalutin, budget busting, alcohol induced financial haze so that we can REALLY have a great time. Let’s get back to our roots here people. That is why I did you a favor and came up with “Uncle Greg’s Tightwad Money Saving Tips” to put a smile on your face – and a positive number back in your bank account! [Read more...]
The following is a guest post from Elaine McPartland of Consolidated Credit. If you are interested in guest posting, please see our guest posting guidelines.
In the struggling American economy, where people already face too many financial crises in their everyday life, there is one more threat looming in the horizon. With the start of the New Year, the speculations regarding the increase in tax levels have been quite ripe. Now that it is very clear that Americans will be facing an increase in almost all payable taxes, the implications of this can be quite negative for everyone.
Impact of Increase in the Payroll Taxes
The most comprehensible effect of this tax rise, especially that of the payroll tax, will result in two major consequences. First, the household debt on American families is expected to rise quite substantially since they will have fewer dollars to spend on average. Reports have suggested that the debt-to-income ratio for people above the age of 35 has risen to an alarming 1.22, which is the highest it has been in the last three decades. Due to further increase in the payroll taxes, this ratio can continue to rise, which can lead to further financial crises for the American economy. To get a better idea of where you stand in terms of finances, you can use a debt ratio calculator. [Read more...]
Editor’s Disclosure: While the following post is an honest review about my experience with H&R Block At Home tax software, it does contain affiliate links. Should you click on those links and complete a purchase, Club Thrifty will receive compensation for the referral.
Hey Thrifty McTrhiftertons! You already know that we think being frugal is awesome, right? Well, that doesn’t just have to apply to reusing old tissue paper or making children’s toys out of empty plastic bottles. That can apply during tax time too!
According to the National Society of Accountants, the average cost of preparing a tax return is $246. That is crazy to me, especially when you can do your own taxes for a fraction of that cost. That is where H&R Blcok At Home comes in. Why spend all of that money to pay somebody else to do what you can do yourself?
In all honesty, I think people are intimidated by all of the complicated forms and tax language that is out there. Yet, for most people, doing your own taxes really isn’t that difficult. The old days of grabbing a paper copy of Form 1040 and the instruction booklet are gone. H&R Block At Home makes filing even your most complicated tax returns easy. [Read more...]