How to Make Last-Minute, Money-Saving Tax Moves
By Dinah Wisenberg Brin, special to CNBC.com
NEW YORK (CNBC) -- Taxpayers looking for ways to trim their 2011 tax bill, or simply to avoid unpleasant surprises when they file their returns, have a few weeks to make potentially helpful, money-saving moves.
Whether it's buying a needed energy-efficient heating system, donating stocks that have appreciated, or increasing 401k contributions, taxpayers can take a number of steps by Dec. 31 to make for happier 2011 returns come filing time.
"If you're going to have a big tax bill due in April I'd like to know about it now so you can plan for it," says Melissa Labant, tax manager at the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA). She suggests taxpayers use a free withholding calculator on the irs.gov Web site. (Or try CNBC's.)
Capital gains in focusMeanwhile, a number of strategies are available to help retirees, college families, homeowners, investors and lower-income earners lighten their tax burdens.
More from CNBC
Taxes, Investments & You: A CNBC Special Report
Why Can't Women Shop More Like Men?
U.S. Might Be Able to Survive Recession in Europe
Select the service that is right for you!COMPARE ALL SERVICES
- $2.5+ million portfolio
- Large-cap and dividend focus
- Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
- Weekly roundups
Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.
- Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
- Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
- A custom stock screener
- Upgrade/downgrade alerts
- Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
- Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
- Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
- Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
- Intraday commentary & news
- Ultra-actionable trading ideas
- 100+ monthly options trading ideas
- Actionable options commentary & news
- Real-time trading community
- Options TV