New Year’s Resolutions
It’s a brand new year, and a majority of us are looking forward to accomplishing many things in 2017. Some resolutions include:
• Weight Loss
• No more Debt
Although you make be thinking, what do all these items have to do with taxes? They actually have the added bonus of a tax deduction!
• Weight Loss
You may be able to deduct certain weight loss medical expenses
, like gastric bypass or visits with the nutritionist, if prescribed by a doctor to mitigate or prevent disease. Even the cost for commercial programs like Weight Watchers can be deducted, providing your doctor has confirmed that your current weight is a threat to your health.
• No more Debt:
There is no tax deduction for consumer debt (i.e. credit cards), however, if you have a student loan
or mortgage, you’ll want to look into deducting your interest payments. You can deduct interest paid not only on your home’s mortgage, but also on a second mortgage, a line of credit or a home equity loan.
If you attend a qualifying school or college, you may be able to claim the American Opportunity Tax Credit or the Lifetime Learning Credit
. One cannot claim the American Opportunity credit in the same year you claim the Lifetime Learning credit because the IRS only allows one tax reduction per student, per year. Students who are in one of their first four years of post-secondary education, the American Opportunity credit can provide greater tax savings since the maximum credit is $2,500 vs. $2,000 for the Lifetime Learning Credit.
• Travel: You may be able to deduct qualifying non-reimbursed expenses for business trips. To determine whether you can deduct an expense on your tax return, you must meet two requirements: your duties require you to be away from your regular place of business substantially longer than an ordinary day’s work and you need sleep to meet the demands of your work while you’re away. Some expenses include transportation, tolls and gas.
• Volunteer: You may be able to get a tax deduction, not for your time spent, but for supplies you purchased for the charitable organization, miles driven to get to the charitable organization or money donated during the year.
Your receipts and all records of support are needed in order to make things easier when submitting items for your tax return come around.