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End of the Year Tax Tips |

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End of the Year Tax Tips

End of the Year Tax Tips There is another list you should be checking in addition to your holiday shopping list. This list will enable you to save money rather than spend it so let's definitely get excited about attacking the end of the year tax to-do list.

1.) Make an extra mortgage payment Go ahead and pay your January 1st mortgage payment in December and you will get an additional deduction for the interest paid. Make sure you get the payment in in plenty of time for it to arrive at your lender's by year's end. That way, the added interest will show up on the annual statement you will get from your lender in late January detailing your deductible mortgage activity.

2.) Charitable giving Charities are most in need of donations by the end of the year and this can help you ease your tax bill for 2012. Keep all records of cash donations especially if the total is $250.00 or more.

3.) Job hunt deductions Did you look for a job this year? If so, you can deduct travel expenses, continuing education expenses and resume prep. Even those copies made at Kinkos can be deducted if you keep the receipt.

4.) IRA contributions If you have an IRA separate from your 401K, you have until April 15th of the upcoming year to contribute to your retirement savings and apply your 2011 contributions to 2012 taxes as a deduction.

5.) Medical expenses If expenses for medical care are close to the 7.5 percent in medical expenses needed to declare them as a tax deduction, go ahead and schedule a procedure or appointment that you need anyway before the end of the year.

6.) Save energy and tax dollars Among the credits expiring at the end of 2011 is one that allows a claim of up to $500 for energy efficiency improvements to a house, including steps like installing new windows, a new boiler or insulation. This is a lifetime credit, so if you have already taken it in a previous year, you can't claim it again. And the work has to be completed by the end of the year. J

ennifer Streaks, Finance Expert Continue the conversation by following me on twitter @JStreaks

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