Tax Guru – Ker$tetter Letter

Helping real people win the tax game.

Archive for December, 2004

Posted by taxguru on December 31, 2004

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Posted by taxguru on December 31, 2004

Tax Breaks Threatened for Historic Homes

 

Property Tax Hikes Part of National Trend

 

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More Riders, Fewer Pushers – What Could Go Wrong Here?

Posted by taxguru on December 31, 2004

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My Quicken Tips

Posted by taxguru on December 31, 2004

For some reason, my several years old Quicken Tips have been popping up on the internet search engines, prompting the following recent emails  

 

1:

Subject: Quicken Info Commendation

Thanks for a very informative web page re Quicken although a user for years I learned a great deal from the visit today and am in gratitude.

 

2: 

Subject: Your Quicken Tips Website is appreciated

Dear Mr. Kerstetter,

Being a fairly new user of Quicken Home & Bus. (converted from Money about 4 months ago) and having had the need to… well, shall we say clean it up and reorganize it… due to the launch of a second home business, I came across your website while looking for advice that would help be best utilize it for my needs.

After scouring many websites and forums and uncovering nothing but scattered bits and pieces of the sought-after info I came across your site.  Just a quick scan of it has already proved to be of immense help – allowing me to understand how to properly treat returns and rebates, and applying the Class assignment to reduce the number of categories used when differentiating between expenses for each business.

I guess what I’m trying to say is thank you very much for posting your tips, it is appreciated.

sincerely,

 

I sent this same reply to both writers:

I’m glad to see that you found the info I’ve posted useful.

While I have no plans to add any more info specifically on Quicken to my website, I will be adding quite a bit of tips for QuickBooks, many of which will be just as applicable to Quicken users.

Good luck.

Kerry Kerstetter

 

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Wishful Thinking

Posted by taxguru on December 31, 2004

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Posted by taxguru on December 31, 2004

Q:

Subject: BeneTrends – ESOP

Hi Kerry, What are your feelings on the ESOP program which allows use of IRA funds for business start ups? I am weighing the options of using a small business loan, home equity or tapping my IRA for approx 150K…. Any advice is greatly appreciated. Thank you

A:

I’m still as supportive of using one’s own retirement account for a new business start-up as I was when I wrote my earlier article on this eight month ago:

There must be other companies providing this service; but BeneTrends is the only one I am currently aware of.

Good luck.

Kerry Kerstetter

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Posted by taxguru on December 31, 2004

High taxes are driving people away from LI – Thanks to Ben Cunningham for this additional example of the steps people will take to reduce their tax burdens.

 

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Posted by taxguru on December 30, 2004

Lottery winner, 94, sues to get it all now – If anyone’s a candidate for the secondary market to sell off her future rights to these payments, this 94 year old woman is.  Making her wait 20 years to be paid off is ridiculous.

 

Nebraska Man May Have Rare Coin. Silver Dollar May Be Worth Millions. – Nice retirement benefit.

 

 

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Taxes Do Motivate Behavior

Posted by taxguru on December 30, 2004

Smokers make run on loose tobacco before tax begins – Just another reminder of how much taxes affect personal behavior.  One of the long running frustrations in debates over tax issues is that the other side remains so oblivious to this simple fact of life.  In their fairy tale world, tax rates can be raised and new taxes can be added and everyone will continue doing the exact same things as before.  The fact, as proven over and over again, is that higher rates stimulate less taxable activity and lower rates encourage more.  Please remember this in the face of so many calls to raise tax rates to attack the deficit. 

This is also the reason I have never been in the least bit afraid of losing my livelihood if we were to achieve our wish and replace the Federal income tax with a national sales tax or any other such change in the way governments fund their activities. People will still need our services to help them minimze those new taxes.

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Posted by taxguru on December 29, 2004

Q:

Subject: Section 179 Deductions

I’ve been studying this section all day, and according to EVERYONE on the internet, a self-employed taxpayer may take a one-time deduction of up to $25,000 on a 6000+ lb. vehicle in the year the vehicle was put into service.  BUT, according to the IRS, and 3 CPA’s, who I have been on the phone with ALL DAY LONG, no such deduction exists!  Where can I find this in an IRS publication? TaxGuru, help me please!
Respectfully,
Debbie

 

A:

Debbie:

If you go to my blog (www.TaxGuru.net) and use the search tool at the top to look for 179, you will see dozens of postings on this very topic.  You can also see it described on my main website at:
http://www.taxguru.org/incometax/Rates/Sec179.htm

Since you don’t seem to be doing very well at finding a tax pro who is very current on important tax topics, you should also check out my guide to finding a good tax advisor at:
http://www.taxguru.org/incometax/prepare.htm

Good luck.

Kerry Kerstetter

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