Saving Money On Your Taxes Before December 31st

The new year is only a few days away, and while many people are thinking about celebrating with a champagne toast or fireworks, some say you might want to think about taxes.

If you are watching your money closely, there are some things you should check off your list before the stroke of midnight Friday.

Certified Public Accountant Richard Cox says if you make your January mortgage payment in December you get an extra month of interest deduction, which could be pretty large on someones tax return if they itemize their deductions.

That early payment might not be an option for every taxpayer , but Cox says there are still a few more ways to keep Uncle Sam's hands off your cash. "Another thing to consider is paying property tax before December 31st and again it goes back to what I said about paying expenses before the end of the year."

Charitable contributions can also help when it comes time to file your taxes next year. Cox says, "Charitable contributions made by December 31st you can deduct those in your tax returns. Even if you have any old clothes , appliances or furniture that you can take to the Salvation Army they'll give you a receipt"

Getting organized and ahead could keep an extra dollar in your pocket for a rainy day in 2011.

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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by ??? Location: nc on Dec 30, 2010 at 08:27 PM
    Why aren't lotto tickets deductable? It's a non-profit organization right? I mean for all except the democratic politicians.
  • by Aunt B on Dec 30, 2010 at 11:59 AM
    "G" you're good!
  • by G on Dec 30, 2010 at 10:49 AM
    Mr. R: I understand completely. You save money on taxes now, with some uncertainly for the future. However, since as you state we know taxes aren't going up for 2 years we have eliminated some uncertainty. Consider this: If you have enough money to make your mortgage payment early, then you probably have enough money to pay the taxes that you would save by paying early this year. Let's say you do that. Next year comes around, and you don't have the extra money to pay your mortgage before year's end. Now in addition to not having the money to pay your mortgage, you will also have a higher tax bill, because you will only have 11 month's worth of mortgage payments to deduct. A double whammy. It's short term thinking like this by accountants and financiers on a much grander scale that lead to our country's current economic crisis.
  • by R Location: Greenville on Dec 30, 2010 at 08:15 AM
    Mr. G, Your comment of Penny wise and pound foolish is a perfect reason for untrained professionals to be filing your own tax returns. You totsally miss the "deferal concept" of taxes. Deferring taxes when we know what we know now that tax rates will not be going up for at least the next two years, is a legal way to pay less tax NOW, which saves money NOW.
  • by S Location: W on Dec 30, 2010 at 07:53 AM
    No, lottery tickets ar not tax deductable, but if you win the lottery the taxman commeth big time.
  • by G on Dec 29, 2010 at 11:27 PM
    Penny wise and pound foolish advice. While you will save on this year's taxes if you pay your mortgage and property taxes before Dec 31, you'll have to do the same next year or you'll be paying more next year. Better to just pay as you normally do, and that way you won't get any surprises at next year's tax time. In other words, if you normally pay before the end of the year, keep on doing so; and if you don't, don't.
  • by ??? Location: nc on Dec 29, 2010 at 08:57 PM
    How about lottery tickets? Aren't they deductable?
  • by ibxer on Dec 29, 2010 at 07:44 PM
    Definitely pay your property taxes before year end. Word is that in exchange for tax cuts for the rich the rest of us (the working poor and middle class) will lose our ability to write off property taxes we paid. So pay them now so you can take the deduction this year!

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