• Tax Tips

  • $500 Residential Energy Credit.  Taxpayers can claim a tax credit of up to $500 for certain energy-efficient improvements to your primary residence.  The credit equals 10% of eligible costs for energy-efficient insulation, windows, entry doors, and roof in addition to 100% of eligible costs for energy-efficient heating and cooling equipment. Call us for details!

    $250 Deduction for K-12 Educators.  Teachers and other eligible personnel at K-12 schools can deduct up to $250 of school-related expenses paid out-of-pocket whether they itemize deductions or not.  Question? Call us!

    Cancellation of Debt.  For Federal income tax purposes, a cancellation of debt is generally counted as taxable income. However a Cancelation of principal residence indebtedness of up to $2 million is tax-free.  Call us for details if you’re unsure!   

    2015 Standard Mileage Rates.  Employees and self-employed individuals who use their vehicle(s) for job related purposes can deduct either the actual costs of operating the vehicle or use the standard mileage rate.  The business standard mileage rate also includes a depreciation component which makes it considerably higher than either the charitable or medical/moving rates.  The standard mileage rates for 2015 are: Business 57.5 cents per mile, charitable is 14 cents per mile and medical/moving is 23 cents per mile.  The depreciation component of the business rate is 24 cents per mile.

    Per Diem RatesSelf-employed taxpayers and employees can use the per diem method based on federal reimbursement rates for specific locations to compute deductions for meals and incidental expenses (M&IE) (but not lodging) while traveling on business. Lodging is deductible but only actual expenses incurred.  Transportation workers can use $59 per day within CONUS and $65 outside CONUS. Taxpayers who incur incidental but not meal expenses can deduct $5 per day while traveling for business.

    Home Office Deduction.  To deduct the home office expense a taxpayer must use the space regularly and exclusively as a principal place of business whether to meet with clients or customers or to administer the business or used in connection with the business if the space is a separate structure from the residence.  Utilities, mortgage interest, real estate taxes, home repairs and maintenance and other expenses are deductible using actual expenses or the relatively new safe-harbor method can be used.  Call us for details!