Did You Purchase a Home This Year?
If you purchased a home in 2009 and are a first-time home buyer,
you may be entitled to a tax credit of ten percent of the purchase price of a
home. A "first-time home buyer" is an individual who had no ownership
interest in a residence during the three years preceding the purchase of the
new home. This also applies to your spouse if you are purchasing a home
For those who would be considered a first-time home buyer, you
are eligible to receive a credit of 10% of the purchase price of your new home
with a maximum at $8,000. Those who took the credit in
2008 for 2007 purchases do have to repay their credit over 15 years. There is
an income limit for the credit --
$75,000 for single filers and $150,000 for
married filing jointly. The credit is refundable, so if your tax liability is less
than the credit, you will receive a refund. If the home is sold within 3 years
from purchase, the credit will have to be repaid. Otherwise, it is
not required to be repaid.
If you purchased a home after November 6, 2009, and owned your home for 5 consecutive years prior to your purchase date, you may be eligible for a $6,500 tax credit. Income restrictions and other fine print exist, so, please discuss the particulars with a member of our staff.
Make sure to maximize your contributions to these plans. Due dates
for deductibility vary depending on the plan, so call or email us
for the specifics if you don't know them. We're right here to
The holidays mean giving and gifts are on everyone's mind. The IRS
has special requirements for cash charitable contributions. What
does this mean for you? Each cash charitable contribution you make
must be backed up with a written receipt or other documentation,
regardless of the amount. Gone are the days of estimates. So
continue to be as generous as you'd like, but make sure to get
that receipt! Also, make sure you give us
your mileage logs for
charitable miles (14 cents a mile), medical miles (24 cents a
mile), business miles (55 cents). We want you to get every
deduction you are legally entitled to!
Deduction for Non-Itemizers:
two out of three taxpayers choose to take the standard deduction rather than
itemizing deductions such as mortgage interest and charitable contributions.
The basic standard deduction is:
for married couples filing a joint return and qualifying widows and
widowers, a $200 increase over 2008
for singles and married individuals filing separate returns, up $100, and
for heads of household, up $150.
apply to blind people and senior citizens. The standard deduction is often
reduced for a taxpayer who qualifies as someone else's dependent.
New this year,
taxpayers can claim an additional standard deduction, based on the state or
local real-estate taxes paid in 2009. Taxes paid on foreign or business
property do not count. The maximum deduction is $500, or $1,000 for joint
Also new for
2009, a taxpayer can increase his standard deduction by the net disaster losses
suffered from a federally declared disaster. A worksheet is available in the
instructions for Forms 1040 and 1040A.
Invest in Your Business?
If you loaned money to your business, you are required to charge
interest on the loan and report it as income on your personal
return! If you don't, the IRS may reclassify it as a contribution
to capital. Call or email
and we can help you understand this