Click to listen how you could save thousands with a strong tax strategy from Sound Financial Strategies.
Tax planning should be part of your overall financial strategy, and should be considered on an ongoing basis throughout the year. Without a successful financial strategy, you might risk tax liabilities for your estate or miss out on important tax benefits.
As the end of the year approaches, there are a number of steps you can take to minimize your taxes and to help you preserve your wealth, even if you haven’t examined your tax situation throughout the year.
Only 51% of Canadians regularly look for tax-efficient options when considering new investments.
Reporting your losses on your investments could be worth thousands in erasing capital gains from the current year. Unapplied capital losses can be used to clear out taxes on capital gains of the prior three years or on future gains, if you have no gains on this year’s return. This is an open-ended opportunity to carry forward.
In order to claim a deduction on your next income tax return, make sure you pay your investment counselling fees and interest on investment loans by December 31st. Investment counselling fees for registered plans are not tax deductible, such as your RRSP, RRIF, TFSA, RESP or RDSP accounts.
Tax Loss Selling
If you have investments that haven’t succeeded this year, you have until December 24th to make any trades with your investments with accrued losses to ensure settlement this calendar year. If you realized capital gains in the past three years and you wish to apply this year’s capital loss against those capital gains to generate a refund of taxes paid in those years, this would be another reason to consider recognizing that loss this year. When reviewing your investment choices, don’t sell a stock simply to show a tax loss, there should be a reason if an investment is going to be sold. If the future of the investment looks encouraging, the tax loss benefits may not offset the potential advantage.
Tax Gain Donating
Consider donating appreciated publicly traded securities, mutual funds or segregated funds “in-kind” when considering making a charitable donation. You will get a donation receipt for the fair market value of the security donated and you won’t pay tax on the capital gains. Make sure to check with the charity beforehand that it can process a gift made in-kind before the end of the year.
Many items which are deductible for tax purposes must be paid by the end of the year- child care expenses, professional dues, charitable donations, medical expenses and political contributions. December 31, 2014 is the last day for RESP contributions, 2014 charitable contributions and 2014 TFSA contributions.
You might be doing everything right with your money and investments- you work with a financial advisor, accountant and have a stock broker to help you make crucial financial decisions, but what’s wrong with this picture? It could be costing you thousands of dollars. Oftentimes, using these different services separately could cost you. If your financial service providers aren’t all working together and communicating, unnecessary capital gains can be triggered and you end up paying a significant amount of income taxes. Using a financial advisor who offers collaborative, comprehensive services is an effective financial strategy and could end up saving you thousands of dollars.
Follow these tax planning tips which can be easily implemented into your current financial strategy. Other tax minimization solutions are more complicated and require professional advice, so contact a local collaborative financial advisor who specializes in wealth management and tax minimization.