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Ken Amaro's Top 10 Ways to Improve Tax Returns, Save Money

2:28 PM, Mar 8, 2011   |    comments
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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Every year the IRS reports the mistakes taxpayers make on their returns, like forgetting to include a Social Security number, but did you know there are deductions that are often overlooked that could put more money in your pocket?

Here are my Top 10 ways to put more tax return money in your pocket.

Number 10:

Out-of-pocket charitable contributions: The things you purchased for your child's school fundraising. And yes, you do need receipts. "And the receipts needs to name the charity, the date and how much was contributed," said Debra Yates, of Real Sense Prosperity Campaign.

Number Nine:

Job hunting expenses: Cab fares, the cost of printing resumes or business cards all are deductible.

Number eight:

Moving expenses to take your first job: You can get this written off even if you don't itemize and "if it is closely related to work and you're moving 50 miles or more from the original location," said Yates.

Number Seven:

If you're a military reservist, your travel expenses are deductible, but you have to travel more than 100 miles from home and stay overnight.

Number Six:

College students: If your parents paid the interest on your student loan, you can deduct the interest and you don't have to itemize.

Number Five:

American Opportunity Credit: This allows you to write off college tuition and related expenses

Number Four:

Child care credit: A credit is much better than a deduction. "It is a dollar-to-dollar reduction of your income," said Yates.

Number Three:

Small business owners: Owners can save on your tax bill by using the real sense prosperity campaign. "The limit is, we're only doing expenses up to 25,000," said Yates. 

Number Two:

Health insurance deductions: Reduce your self-employment tax.

"You can take that deduction for yourself and for your family as well," she said. "(During tax season) People leave a lot of money on the table." 

My Number One way to get more money out of your income tax return:

Energy home improvements: "Some qualified roofing materials, some exterior doors,windows even things like hot water heaters could be a potential deduction this year," said Yates.

Don't shortchange yourself. It is easy to miss deductions and end up paying Uncle Sam more than you have to pay.














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