Taxes from A to Z: D Is For Deductible Taxes

D is for Deductible Taxes. (Admit it, you thought I was going to say depreciation. Nah, that was last year.) It feels like everything you touch these days is associated with some kind of tax. You can get socked with taxes for doing anything from working to tanning to smoking. It can add up. Surely some of it is deductible, right? Luckily, the answer is yes – with some caveats. In order to deduct certain taxes, you must first itemize on a federal form 1040, Schedule A (downloads as a pdf). You’ll find the specific section tucked in between Medical …

Fix the Tax Code Friday: Lesser of Tax Evils?

This month, Philadelphia voted to raise property taxes rather than impose a controversial sales tax on soda and sugary drinks, while New York won another round on its efforts to collect excise taxes from cigarettes sold by Indian nations. Other cities and states have struggled with similar questions when it comes to raising revenue. So today’s Fix the Tax Code Friday question is: Assuming that raising revenue by adding a new tax or increasing an existing tax was your only option, which tax would you prefer to see boosted or added: sales tax, real estate tax, income tax or excise tax …

Ask the taxgirl: “Real Estate Tax” In Health Care Law?

Taxpayer asks: Please tell me this isn’t so…..Under the new health care bill, all real estate transactions will be subject to a 3.8 % sales tax. This new tax is supposed to kick in 2013. taxgirl says: I’ve gotten a few questions about this so-called “real estate tax” lately. Concern about the “tax” has escalated due to a chain email making the rounds. The email, which has a few variations, looks more or less like this: This should help stimulate the real estate market! Under the new health care bill, did you know that all real estate transactions are subject …

Fix the Tax Code Friday: Property tax abatement

It’s Fix the Tax Code Friday! Earlier this week, the Philadelphia Inquirer ran an article about an issue that has been on the minds of many local taxpayers as the city prepares for major cuts in services: real estate tax abatement. Many municipalities – from major metropolitan areas like Philly and NYC to smaller towns like Oskaloosa, IA and Shaker City, OH – offer temporary property tax breaks to developers or homeowners who buy new construction or significantly improve existing construction. The tax breaks range from as short as one tax year to as many as ten tax years. Opponents …