Financial Tips

Tax Saving Techniques

Date: 10/2/2013

The following are some generally recognized financial planning tools that may help you reduce your tax bill.

Charitable Giving - Instead of selling your appreciated long-term securities, donate the stock instead and avoid paying tax on the unrealized gain while still getting a charitable tax deduction for the full fair market value.

Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) - If you have a high deductible medical plan you can open an HSA and make tax-deductible contributions to your account to pay for medical expenses. Unlike flexible spending arrangements (FSAs), the contributions can carry over for medical expenses in future years.

ROTH IRAs - Contributions to a ROTH IRA are not tax deductible but the qualified distributions, including earnings, are tax-free.

Municipal Bonds - Interest earned on these types of investments is tax-exempt.

Own a home - most of the cost of this type of investment is financed and the interest (on mortgages up to $1,000,000) is tax-deductible. When the property is sold, individuals may exclude up to $250,000 ($500,000 if married jointly) of the gain.

Retirement Plans - Participate in your employer-sponsored retirement plan, especially if there is a matching component. You will receive a current tax deduction and the tax-deferred compounding can add up to large retirement savings.