7 Commonly Overlooked Tax Deductions

Though the only two guarantees in life are death and taxes, most people avoid thinking about both. When tax time rolls around, millions of Americans file their taxes as they always have and move on with their spring. If you do your taxes yourself, it’s hard to remember all the IRS’s ins and outs, and many people are afraid of doing their taxes incorrectly. Others send their taxes to an accountant and let them handle the work. Whichever group you fall into, remember to look for the following commonly overlooked tax deductions that could earn you money on this year’s return.

1. Child Care

If you have one or more children under the age of 13 and both you and your spouse work full time, you can claim the money you spend on child care. This includes summer camp fees and is still applicable if one parent works full time, and the other is a full-time student. The savings on this deduction can be significant, especially if you have multiple children.

2. Continuing Education

If you or a dependent are taking any classes toward a degree, are enrolled in a graduate program, or are taking classes to benefit job performance or qualifications from an accredited institution that participates in the Department of Education’s student aid program, you may be eligible for a deduction. To qualify, your gross income must be below $68,000 for single filers and $136,000 for joint filers.

3. Last Year’s State Taxes

If you owed money on your state taxes last year, you could claim the amount (up to $10,000) on this year’s taxes. This is in addition to any state taxes withheld from your paychecks.

4. Teaching Expenses

People who teach kids in kindergarten through high school are eligible to receive up to $250 for supplies and books that they’ve bought for their classroom.

5. Savings Payments

If your income is less than $32,000 as a single filer or $64,000 as a joint filer and you contributed to a retirement savings account, 401k, or IRA, you may be eligible for a deduction on that money. The total can be up to $1,000, depending on your income.

6. Traveling to Do Good

You probably already know that charitable donations are tax-deductible, but did you know that traveling for charity is also deductible? If you traveled last year for the sole purpose of volunteering, your travel expenses could be deducted. Receipts are required, and the purpose of the trip must have been to volunteer. No part of it can be construed as a vacation.

7. Job-Related Expenses

Expenses such as union dues, supplies, and travel connected to your job that your employer did not reimburse you for are eligible for tax deductions. This includes job-related moving expenses, but only if your employer didn’t already compensate you for them. The exception to this is military-related moves, which are not tax-deductible.

To get the most out of your tax refund, or for information on loans and finances of all kinds, contact Western Shamrock. Our personal touch makes doing your taxes a lot more enjoyable. Call us today!

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