James Zahansky, AWMA®
Principal/Managing Partner, Investment Advisor & Chief Goals Strategist
For some, this year has been as complicated as learning a new dance. Did you start a new job or leave a job behind? That’s one step. Did you retire? There’s another step. If notable changes took place in your personal or professional life, then you may want to review your finances before this year ends and 2024 begins. Proving that you have all the right moves in 2023 might put you in a better position to tango with 2024.
Even if your 2023 has been relatively uneventful, the end of the year is still an excellent time to get cracking and see where you can manage your overall personal finances.
(Keep in mind that this article is for informational purposes only and is not a replacement for real-life advice. Please consult your tax, legal and accounting professionals before modifying your tax strategy.)
Should I Engage in Tax-Loss Harvesting?
That’s the practice of taking capital losses (selling securities for less than what you first paid for them) to manage capital gains. You might want to consider this move, but it should be made with the guidance of a financial professional you trust.1
If some investments in your portfolio have suffered a loss, the end of the year is a common time to consider if it would make sense to “harvest losses” by selling them. Doing so can offset gains you have realized in your portfolio, as well as up to $3,000 of your earned income. Tax-loss harvesting can get complex, so this is a great topic about which to seek professional help. Be aware: Investments can only be rebought after a certain period, as selling a security for a loss and buying back within 30 days does not qualify.
Should I Itemize Deductions?
You may want to take the standard deduction for the 2023 tax year, which has risen to $13,850 for single filers and $27,700 for joint. If you think it might be better for you to itemize, now would be a good time to gather the receipts and assorted paperwork.2
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End this year strong, start next year stronger.
Book a complimentary consultation before the end of this year to:
- Uncover strategies to minimize taxes, this year and beyond
- See how to map the course toward achieving your big financial goals
- Discover the confidence that can come from working with a team of caring and experienced financial advisors whose goal is to always to act in your best interest
- Learn how working with an independent wealth management firm can benefit you and your investment portfolio
Do My Charitable Donations Qualify for a Tax Deduction?
Charitable contributions donated directly to a qualified charity or to a donor-advised fund can help you get a federal tax deduction. Keep in mind, however, that this will often only be beneficial if you’re itemizing. It’s worthwhile to discuss with your tax professional if your charitable contributions, in addition to other deductions, will surpass your standard deduction.
Can I Contribute More to Retirement Funds?
While the state of the economy might make you hesitant about setting additional income aside, consider whether you’re financially able to maximize (or increase) contributions to your workplace retirement plan. At the very least, find out if you’re contributing the minimum to take full advantage of any employer match benefit. Increasing your contributions to a traditional IRA is another option, though you should be mindful that those with higher incomes may not qualify for a tax deduction.
Should I Consider Roth Conversions?
If you have some room in your current tax bracket before reaching a higher federal income tax rate, you may want to consider doing a Roth Conversion. This would involve converting some of your pre-tax retirement savings, like in a traditional IRA, into a post-tax account, like a Roth IRA, so you’d never have to pay taxes on future earnings. Taxes would be paid up front on the conversion amount, and you’d enjoy tax-free growth in the future. If this interests you, discuss this strategy with your advisor, who can help determine if it’s an ideal time to do a conversion. He or she can also run projections to see if you would end up paying less in taxes over time with this strategy.
What Can You Do Before Ringing in the New Year?
New Year’s Eve may put you in a dancing mood, eager to say goodbye to the old year and welcome 2024. Before you put on your dancing shoes, though, consider speaking with a financial or tax professional. Do it now, rather than in February or March. Small end-of-year moves might help you improve your short-term and long-term financial situation.
At Weiss, Hale & Zahansky Strategic Financial Advisors, we use our Plan Well, Invest Well, Live Well™strategic process to help our clients reach their financial goals and dreams. Contact us for a complimentary consultation by calling (860) 928-2341, or request one on our website.
Presented by Principal/Managing Partner James Zahansky, AWMA®. Securities and advisory services offered through Commonwealth Financial Network®, Member FINRA/SIPC, a Registered Investment Adviser. These materials are general in nature and do not address your specific situation. For your specific investment needs, please discuss your individual circumstances with your representative. Weiss, Hale & Zahansky Strategic Wealth Advisors does not provide tax or legal advice, and nothing in the accompanying pages should be construed as specific tax or legal advice. 697 Pomfret Street, Pomfret Center, CT 06259 and 392-A Merrow Road, Tolland, CT 06084. 860-928-2341. www.whzwealth.com.