Wondering how the new tax laws will affect you? Need to get your personal finances in order? CPA and host of "Greenberg News" on WNJC 1360 AM in Philadelphia, Brian Greenberg is taking tax questions.
According to Greenberg, most people won't see much of a change in their tax bills on April 15, 2011—the "new" law is really a continuation of what's been going on for the past two years.
Only in the government when they don't raise your taxes is it considered a tax cut.
But because of the tax legislation recently signed by President Obama, workers will be paying two percent less in social security taxes next year (and theoretically, only next year). Businesses will continue to pay the entire social security tax for each employee. Here are a few tips from the CPA:
- Should I buy that $2,500 Canon 5D camera? If you're a freelancer, and you want to make a big purchase for your business, it still makes sense to do it and write the cost off as a deduction. But it doesn't matter if you do it this year or next—there's no difference.
- What's the best low-hanging fruit I can snag before December 31? For individuals, the biggest credit out there is the energy credit. You can get 30 percent of what you spend (up to a cap of $1,500) back in lower taxes. For example, if you spend $5,000 putting in a new heating and air conditioning system, 30 percent of that—$1,500—will be rebated back to you in lower taxes from the government.
- Does having a child pay? Well, it pays in the joys of childrearing but in terms of taxes, not really, unless you qualify for the Earned Income Tax Credit for low-income working families. If not, you will get to put an additional deduction on your tax forms, and you might get a few bucks back in reimbursement for your day care expenses, but Greenberg says "the bottom line is having a child is a net negative, it'll cost you a lot more than any tax rebate you'll get from the government."
If you have more tax questions, you can call Greenberg toll free at 877-274-9000 or go to his website.