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Tax Preparation In Reno And Electronic Filing

Everything today is moving online, and the way you file your taxes is no exception. More and more returns are being filed electronically today. As a Reno CPA I have to let you know that if you file electronically, it is going to save you time and is going to be a lot faster in many different ways. When it comes to tax preparation, you need to know your options.

Usually if you were to send in your paper tax return, it would take three to four months for you to get any acknowledgement from the IRS. With electronic filing, you usually get acknowledgment within 48 hours. This is great, because you don’t have to spend months worrying about whether your return was filled out correctly.

Along with electronic filing comes an option for direct deposit. This is the really cool part about how technology has played into taxes. You go through the work of filling out your return and then you have to play the waiting game. Well not any more, yes you will still have to wait, but with direct deposit, your money will be deposit sooner and there is less chance of your check getting lost in the mail. Some people worry about the safety of providing the IRS with your bank account information, but as a Reno CPA I want to let you know it is just as safe as your check going through the mail.

You also have to consider the time you will save by not having to go to the post office to send in your return. The trip to the post office alone can take a lot of time out of your life.

Lastly, an interesting fact is that the IRS is pushing for electronic filing. Next year a CPA who files 100 tax returns will be required to file most of the returns electronically. If you are still wary about technology and electronically filing, I understand. You need to contact Reno’s Best CPA for more information and to get help with your tax return.

Until Next Time,
Tim Nelson

Reno’s Best CPA

Tax Preparation In Reno And Electronic Filing2019-03-28T14:40:15-07:00

Your Reno Accountant Discusses The Top Two Tax Credits

Do you know what the best tax credits of the year are? If not, then you should talk to a Reno accountant. Many people are turning to tax-filing programs to take care of their taxes. The problem is that these programs don’t tell you what the biggest tax breaks of the year are. Working with a CPA is a great way to learn about things you can do throughout the year that will provide you with more write-offs.

Now back to the top two tax credits of the year. The first is the adoption of a foreign child and the second is a buying an electric golf cart.

Let’s start by looking at adopting a foreign child. There is a dollar for dollar credit for the expenses of adopting a child. Although this is a great credit, not many people are going to do this, but it is still an optional credit. Now, let’s turn to the electric golf cart. You may think I am joking, which I do from time to time, but I am not.

The second best tax credit for this year is buying an electric golf cart. Furthermore, if you have/add headlights and taillights on your electric golf cart, it fits the national criteria for an electric car. Because it is classified as a car, you get a 50% tax credit for the purchase price, presuming that it’s a new golf cart.

One of the local reporters had a news segment on the electric golf cart and figured that between the special sales tax deductions for a new vehicle, the 50% tax credit for buying a golf cart that is road ready, and all the other discounts and benefits, the cart is free. He figures that the $9500 electric golf cart that he bought was free.

For a simplified description of the credit, you can check out eHow’s guide: How to Get a Golf Cart Tax Rebate.

You probably hear about all the other energy savings stuff, like solar and wind power, but how about the electric golf cart. This one item is a great example of why you should work with a Reno accountant. We will help you understand all the credits available to you, and make sure you are getting the most money back.

Reno’s Best CPA,

Tim Nelson

Your Reno Accountant Discusses The Top Two Tax Credits2019-03-28T14:41:24-07:00

CPA In Reno Explains Debt Forgiveness

One topic of discussion I have encountered recently is debt forgiveness. Is debt forgiveness taxable, does it have to be included with my income? As a CPA in Reno, I wish I had a general answer, but it is a very complex topic.

The IRS Website states, “The tax impact of debt forgiveness or cancellation depends on your individual facts and circumstances. Generally, if you borrow money from a commercial lender and the lender later cancels or forgives the debt, you may have to include the canceled amount in income for tax purposes.”

When looking at debt forgiveness, you have to take into consideration mortgages, credit cards and many other types of forgiveness. As a CPA in Reno, the best advice I can give you is contact an accountant if you are in this situation. The topic is very complex, definitely unique to each individual case and must be handled by someone with experience.

You do not want to get in trouble with the IRS for not including forgiven debt on your tax return. In addition, if you do need to include information you may need the lender to take certain actions. The sooner you figure out what needs to be done, the sooner the process can be started. If you need a lender to take action, it is better to give them plenty of notification, that way you are sure that your return is complete.

The last thing you want is the IRS hounding you. Therefore, call Reno’s Best CPA today and get help with how to handle your forgiven debt. Taxes are a very complex topic, but when debt is involved they can become more complex. Make sure you are being proactive. Once the IRS finds a problem, they will try to get the most money out of you as possible.

Until Next Time,

Tim Nelson

Reno’s Best CPA

CPA In Reno Explains Debt Forgiveness2019-03-29T11:11:05-07:00

A Reno CPA Discusses Nevada’s Budget

There has been a lot of talk in the local and national news about Nevada’s budget shortfall. Many are wondering what the problem is or why Nevada is suffering. I do not think I have the exact answer, but as a Reno CPA who has been working with finances for a while I think I have an idea.

I think the simple answer is that Nevada’s economy is not diversified. Historically we, as a state have relied on three main industries. These industries are gaming, mining and construction. As a state, we have looked to these industries to provide a vast majority of our tax share for the state. The problem with doing this is that when one industry fails or suffers then the others have to pick up the slack. The bigger problem is, when more than one of these areas is suffering. As a Reno CPA, I am always looking for ways to help the businesses I work with stay diversified.

In Nevada, the gaming industry is definitely down. One reason for this decline is that over the years gaming has spread to 49 of the 50 states. Therefore, we are capturing a much smaller percentage of the gaming shares. In addition, the current state of the economy is not helping the gaming industry.

Turing to construction, I believe Nevada has seen the largest decrease in construction in the nation. This is because we had such a run of it for so many years, but when the economy fell, so did the construction industry. In fact, I do not think we will see a decent return in construction for another three years.

Conversely, mining is high. Gold prices are extremely high. Due to the decrease in the other areas and the increase in mining Nevada is looking towards the mining industry to provide a lot of the tax revenue. This dependence on one industry for tax relief is not enough for the state.

As a Reno CPA, I think that one way to help the Nevada economy is to push for diversification. It is not a republican problem. It is not a democrat problem. It is an overall economic problem, which can be helped by not relying so heavily on these three industries.

Reno’s Best CPA,

Tim Nelson

A Reno CPA Discusses Nevada’s Budget2019-03-28T14:48:46-07:00

Reno Accountant Reveals Most Commonly Overlooked Deductions

If you decide to fill your tax return out by yourself, you may be missing tax deductions. Reno Accountants have educated themselves and have hours of experience in handling various types of returns. This allows them to find more deductions for you.

One of the most missed deductions is car and travel expenses. You may think that since you don’t own a business you may not be eligible for travel deductions, but that is not the case. There are travel deductions available for medical visits and charity work. Make sure to ask your Reno accountant about all the possible ways you can save on your next tax return.

In regards to medical, there is a standard rate that can be deducted for your travel expenses to and from the doctor. Although this may not seem like a lot, it all adds up in the end. Your volunteer work with charities is another opportunity. Yes, you can write off your donations, but you can also get a deduction for your travel expenses to and from the charity or charitable event. Every time you are in your car, it is important to ask yourself whether you can write of your mileage.

Another commonly missed deduction is job reimbursements. There are many times throughout the year where you may need to buy something or drive somewhere for your job, but you are not reimbursed. If you have expenses like these and your employer did not reimburse you, then you can deduct these business related expenses on your tax return.

These are just a couple of the many tax deductions available to you. To make sure that you are deducting everything that you can talk to a Reno accountant about your next tax return.

Until Next Time,

Tim Nelson

Reno’s Best CPA

Reno Accountant Reveals Most Commonly Overlooked Deductions2019-03-29T11:10:41-07:00

A CPA in Reno Explains The Gift Tax

As a CPA in Reno, I understand that you may be having a hard time understanding all the different taxes that are out there. One of the taxes that is not understood is the gift tax.

The IRS defines the gift tax as, “a tax on the transfer of property by one individual to another while receiving nothing, or less than full value, in return. The tax applies whether the donor intends the transfer to be a gift or not.”

Like many taxes, there is an annual exemption for the gift tax. The exemption is $13,000. Therefore, you can give any individual up to $13,000 with no problem. If you give them more than $13,000 in a year then you have to file a special gift tax return.

There are many questions about the gift tax. I will do my best as a CPA in Reno, to answer some of them, but for more answers visit the IRS’ website.

Now that you know what a gift tax is, you might be worried about being taxed for something that you have given. Do not panic. There are gifts/donations that are excluded from this tax. First, remember that there is an exemption; you can give up to the exemption amount without having to worry. Second, if you pay medical or tuition for someone, it is excluded. Third, gifts to your spouse are not included. Fourth, a gift to a political organization is not included. In addition, gifts to certain charities are not included.

If you are worried about what you may owe in taxes, see if your gift falls under one of these categories. Also, if you are the recipient of the gift do not worry. The donor usually pays the tax associated with the gift.

The gift tax is fairly straightforward, but the best advice I can provide is to work with a CPA in Reno if you think you are going to gift a substantial amount of money. You do not want to give a gift or do a good deed and then have the IRS hounding you because you did not pay the appropriate taxes.

Reno’s Best CPA,

Tim Nelson

A CPA in Reno Explains The Gift Tax2019-03-28T14:51:37-07:00

Reno CPA Explains The ABC’s of Education Tax Credits!

There are many tax credits available, but if you are in post-secondary school then you may eligible for more. There are education tax credits available for students in post-secondary education. However, there are different rules and regulations about each credit that you need to understand. I will do my best to cover the basics of each. If you have further questions about your eligibility for these credits, you should contact Evans Nelson & Company CPAs.

The first type of education tax credit is the Hope Credit, which applies to your first two years of post-secondary education. However, with the American Opportunity Tax Credit, the Hope Credit has been expanded to cover four years of post-secondary education. This is the larger of the two main credits and thus it is important to understand it. Visit the IRS’ website for more information about this credit and the new modification.

The second credit that is available is the Lifetime Learning Credit. This credit generally provides a tax deduction for 20 percent of the amounts paid for qualified education expenses and is good for any post secondary education you take throughout your lifetime. This credit is smaller than the Hope Credit, but there is no limit on how many years you can apply it to.

The last education tax credit that is available this year is the Tuition and Fees Deduction. This deduction can be taken above the line, or from your gross income, so there is often more tax advantage depending on your income tax rate.

As a student, you have some additional tax credits that you need to be aware of, but you need to be sure to get the most out of them. The best way to do this is to contact a Reno CPA and start taking advantage today.

Reno’s Best CPA,

Tim Nelson

Reno CPA Explains The ABC’s of Education Tax Credits!2019-03-28T14:53:39-07:00

Certified Public Accountant In Reno Discusses The Hope Credit

One of the largest credits available for college students is the Hope Credit. This credit applies to your first two years of post-secondary education and is just one of the many credits available. To make sure you are getting all the credits available to you call a certified public accountant in Reno today.

According to the IRS “you can claim the Hope Credit if all three of the following requirements are met: You pay qualified tuition and related expenses for the first two years of post-secondary education. You pay the tuition and related expenses for an eligible student. The eligible student is you, your spouse, or a dependent for whom you claim an exemption on your tax return.”

The eligible expenses for the Hope credit are tuition, activity fees, books, school supplies, etc… The basic way to decide if something qualifies is that it has to be paid to the institution because of enrollment. Thus, books and supplies can be included if they are necessary for a class.

If you are a college student or one of your dependents is a college student, then you need to make sure you think about the Hope Credit when it comes time to file your taxes. You can deduct up to $2,000 for your college expenses.

On top of this, there are some modifications to the credit, which are provided by the American Opportunity Tax Credit. The IRS states that for tax years 2009 and 2010, the American Opportunity Tax Credit modifies the Hope Credit as follows:

1. The maximum amount of the credit is increased to $2,500.00.

2. The credit can now be claimed for the first 4 years, not 2, of postsecondary education.

3. The modified adjusted gross income limitations are increased.

4. Qualified expenses include course materials.

5. Generally, 40% of the Hope Credit is now refundable (up to $1,000).

If you are a college student, or one of your dependents is, then you need to contact a certified public accountant in Reno today and start deducting your college expenses.

Reno’s Best CPA,

Tim Nelson

Certified Public Accountant In Reno Discusses The Hope Credit2019-03-29T11:11:31-07:00

Accountant in Reno Helps You Understand State Taxes

Understanding how state taxes apply to individuals and corporations can save you or your business a good deal of money. Of the 50 states, 45 of them have a tax on individuals or corporations. Each state has different regulations about how these taxes apply to residents and non-residents. To make sure that you are filing the proper tax forms you should contact an accountant in Reno.

Here in Nevada we do not have an individual or a corporate income tax. Knowing which states have these taxes is important if you want to relocate. As an individual or a business, you can change your economic situation by moving from a state that has these taxes to one that doesn’t, and vice versa. Moving is not the only reason to understand state taxes.

If you are business owner and decide it is time to expand, you need to understand taxes. The same goes for individuals who provide professional services in multiples states. You need to know that states have different rules regarding CITUS, which governs whether you are subject to state income tax in that particular state. The best way to make sure you are not forgetting to pay taxes in certain state is to call an accountant in Reno today.

As a general rule of thumb, if you are providing professional services within that state you are going to be subject to state taxes. If this is the case your will have to prepare a non-resident return. This additional requirement while complicate your tax preparation, but is something you need to be aware of.

Because of the variety of state income and corporate taxes and the possible affect on your tax situation, you need to be aware of them. If you have questions about how they apply to you or your business, talk to an accountant in Reno.

Reno’s Best CPA,

Tim Nelson

Accountant in Reno Helps You Understand State Taxes2019-03-28T14:58:05-07:00

Certified Public Accountant Tells You How To Write Off The Holidays

We are in between holidays and now is the time to hold those infamous office Christmas parties. If you are like most business owners, these can be fun, but can add a lot of stress to an already busy time of the year. You are focused on wrapping the year up financially and planning for next year. However, these parties might provide an opportunity to get some year-end write-offs. As a certified public accountant in Reno, it is my job to tell you about as many tax deductions as I can.

The first qualification for a tax deductible holiday party is that it must be for your employees. One of the big qualifiers for it is who attends. If the party is just for employees and their families along with the owners, then it will probably be considered a fully deductible event. If this is what a party can be, then what can it not be? It cannot be a party for your customers or for yourself. You can invite non-employees, but then the deduction gets complicated. It may be only partially deductible.

As a certified public accountant, I want to give you some tips that will help you if you are audited. Another thing to think about is the location of the party. You can have it anywhere, but a location other than your home is the best choice. Having it at an office or other venue will make it less controversial should you be audited in the future.

The most important part is making sure to keep the proper documentation. You need to keep all the receipts from the party. It is also a good idea to keep a list of the attendees and their relationships and take some photos at the party. You should keep this documentation for at least three years.

I just wanted to give business owners a different way to look at the holidays. If you want to have a deductible holiday party, than you should talk to a certified public account in Reno.

Reno’s Best CPA,

Tim Nelson

Certified Public Accountant Tells You How To Write Off The Holidays2019-03-28T14:59:14-07:00