Tax reform is officially in place. Over the next several months, the changes could start adding up. Financial professional Brad Allen talks with Milwaukee’s WTMJ-4 about 5 smart money moves to consider now that it’s in effect.
More than 90% of households will get a tax cut this year, and the IRS says we could start noticing bigger paychecks as early as February. The tax cuts are set to expire in 2025. But for the time being, most of us will see less money withheld from our paychecks.
Your 2017 tax returns will not be affected, so plan to file your taxes as usual this year. However, this may be the last year you itemize your taxes. 2018 tax filing season begins Jan. 29. The nation’s tax deadline will be April 17 this year – so taxpayers will have two additional days to file beyond April 15.
1. Check Your Withholding
With the tax changes, you’ll want to make sure you are withholding the right amount out of your paycheck. Ideally, you want to have just enough withheld so that the amount will come as close as possible to your actual tax liability for the year. You can make changes at any time by filling out a W-4 with your employer.
2. Increase Your Savings
Most people are expected to spend their extra income, but this is a great chance to bump up your retirement contributions. Start saving an additional 1 or 2% in your 401(k) or IRA. You haven’t had this money before so you won’t miss it!
3. Take Advantage of Low Interest Rates
If you’re looking to buy a home in the near future, you may want to do it sooner rather than later. Rising interest rates could push mortgage rates over 5%. I also recommend paying off any high interest debt, because credit card companies will likely increase the interest rates you’re paying.
4. Ask for a Raise
Do your research. Find out what workers with similar positions in your area are making. Have a figure in mind before the negotiations start, that way when you are asked how much you want you’ll be able to back the amount up with facts.
5. Consult a Professional
This may be the most important step of all. Before you start making these financial moves, sit down and talk to your financial professional and a tax professional to see what’s best for your situation.