Tax Day may still seem far away. But with your W2s, 1099s and other ingredients in the alphabet-and-numbers soup likely arriving in your mail recently, it’ll be here before you know it. As your neighborhood bank, we wanted to help out with some handy tips -- and a handy tax-filing discount!.
Get a 15% discount from Umpqua Bank and Turbo Tax: If you’re a brave do-it-yourselfer, we’re here to help by offering a 15% discount on filing your federal tax return through Turbo Tax. Just use this link to take advantage: Get a 15% discount on Turbo Tax through Umpqua.
So, what can you do improve this year’s tax season – or next year’s? We asked Umpqua Bank’s CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional Pradeep Tempalli, who provided his favorite tips from tax pros and other experts:
Feed the IRA, Lower Your Taxes: Because the money you contribute to a traditional IRA is a pre-tax contribution, it means you will owe less in income taxes. And because in recent years contributions made until the April 15 tax deadline have been applied to the return for the previous year, they have been popular among people who scramble to soften the blow of a large tax bill.
However, traditional IRAs are tax-deferred, not tax-exempt. Deferred taxes eventually must be paid, presumably at retirement. Alternatively, there are non-traditional IRAs, such as the Roth IRA, that don’t soften the tax bill today but could really lighten the burden in your golden years.
To learn more or open an IRA through Umpqua Bank, come into your neighborhood store, call 1-866-4UMPQUA or check out the IRA page on Umpquabank.com
Research pays: The bottom line is you don’t know what you don’t know. A couple hours of research on websites such as irs.gov can yield hundreds, even thousands of dollars, in tax savings. The IRS website has tons of information. You just have to be patient and look around.
If it starts to give you a headache, newspaper financial columnists are writing about taxes a lot around this time of year. Take a spin through the business sections of The Oregonian, The Seattle Times and the Sacramento Bee.
Talk with a tax expert: However diligent your research, the sprawling, ever-changing tax code makes it easy to miss a meaningful tax break. An investment in a savvy tax adviser or accountant can pay for itself many times over by finding provisions that might otherwise go overlooked.
Once you've filed your taxes you might let out a sigh, or if you get a refund you might let out one of these. But what should you do with your refund? In March, Pradeep will offer his tips on how to be smart with your refund while still having some fun.