Things To Do Before December 31

December 31You’re probably in full holiday frenzy, with an overloaded To Do list and a packed schedule.

While I usually preach ways to pare down and lighten your load, in this case it pays to take on  a few more things to do before December 31 so you don’t miss out on a variety of money-saving benefits that will vanish when the calendar flips.

Do the following things by December 31 and start the new year with more money!

1. Talk to your accountant and find out about year-end tax strategies that can cut your tax bill next year.

This might include:

  • Make charitable donations
  • Contribute to retirement plans
  • Make deductible purchases
  • Pre-pay tax-deductible bills due in January, such as mortgage payments, property-taxes, estimated tax payments, tuition bills
  • Defer income into next year
  • Sell stock
  • Establish a new retirement plan

2. Take advantage of programs that you participate in which have year-end due dates:

If your company has a “use it or lose it” vacation plan, take any unused vacation days pronto or ask for an extension.

Check if you have any frequent flier or rewards points expiring at the end of the year. If you do, redeem them. Check out www.points.com to consolidate points from different reward programs.

If you have a Medical Reimbursement Plan or Flexible Spending Account, use any remaining funds if they expire at the end of the year.

If you are retired and have a retirement plan that requires you to withdraw a certain amount each year, make sure you’ve done so.

3. Get your free annual credit report at www.annualcreditreport.com

There may be no such thing as a free lunch, but there IS a free credit report.

Get yours and make sure there are no errors that could make it harder for you to borrow money, get a credit card or buy a home in the future.

4. This one won’t save you money, but it will help you get next year off to a great start: make plans for a fabulous New Year’s celebration!

GO Do It!

Schedule some time before the end of the year to take these actions that can save you money.

 

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