More Tax Tips That Can Help You Save 

February 2023

<p>More Tax Tips That Can Help You Save&nbsp;</p>

Tax day is approaching fast. Whether you’ve already beat the April 18 deadline, you’re putting the finishing touches on your return or you’re just getting started, we’re here to help.

Read on for tips on how to maximize your tax savings, file an extension and put your refund to good use, so you can get the most out of your money.

Reduce Your Tax Bill

One of the first steps to saving on taxes is knowing which deductions and credits you qualify for. Everything from medical expenses to charitable donations can help lower your taxable income.

We have a whole article on the most common situations and life events that can help you save at tax time. If you haven’t had a chance to check it out, it’s a great place to start.

File an Extension If You Need One

It takes time to go through your finances, identify all of the deductions and credits you qualify for, and gather the documents you need.

The good news is, if you need more time for any reason, you can automatically extend the deadline for your tax return to October 16. There’s no penalty as long as you do it by tax day.

The extension only applies to the paperwork – even with one, you still have to pay your estimated taxes by April 18, or you’ll be subject to interest and penalties.

But it’s worth pushing the deadline if you need to. An accurate return ensures you get the maximum refund you deserve, and it's easy to do using one of the methods below: 

Option 1: File form 4868 and pay any amount due

This form asks for some basic personal information and an estimate of what you owe. You can use tax software or a professional to fill it out and submit it electronically, along with any amount due. Many companies offer this service for free!

You can also fill it out on paper and send it through the good, old-fashioned mail. Enclose a check or money order if you owe additional taxes. Certified mail is recommended because it comes with a receipt that proves you sent it back on time.

Option 2: Make an electronic payment and select “extension.”

If you owe taxes this year, one of the easiest ways to get an extension is by paying all or part of the amount online or by phone, and choosing “extension” as your reason for payment.

It’s free to withdraw the money from your bank account using Direct Pay or the Electronic Federal Tax Payment System. There are also options to pay with your debit or credit card – for a fee.

As you can see, there are numerous ways to file an extension and buy yourself more time to submit your tax return.  

Make Your Refund Count

If you’ve already submitted your 2022 tax return and received a refund, congrats! That’s two things worth celebrating.

Consider setting aside a small portion to treat yourself, then think about how to best use this hard-earned money that has now come back to you.

"Ideally you want to put your tax refund to work and use it to help improve your financial condition," says Joe Velkos, CPA, KPB Tax Director. "Before spending it, assess and determine which financial goals are most urgent."

Here are some options that could have a big impact:

  1. Pay off high-interest debt
    Free up more cash by paying down credit cards or other high-interest debt.
  2. Build your emergency fund
    Life happens, and when it does, having a stash of three to six months’ worth of living expenses is the key to avoiding taking on new debt.
  3. Save for retirement 
    Contribute to your 401(k) or IRA to get the most benefit from compound interest. The sooner you start saving, the more you’ll gain.
  4. Start a college fund
    If you’re a parent, you may want to use the money to start or add to a 529 college savings plan. Like with a retirement account, it pays to start now.
  5. Save for a goal
    Maybe you’ve been dreaming of a new kitchen or a beach vacation. “Wants” can be worthwhile uses of a refund, too. Some purchases, like energy-efficient appliances, double as an investment. 

Meet with a Financial Advisor

You may not ever look forward to filing your taxes. But with a little preparation and the right support, it’s a chore you can master and even turn into a financial win.

Don’t hesitate to reach out to a tax pro who can help you maximize savings and file an extension if you need one. And if you do find yourself with a nice refund, a professional can also help you decide how to best take advantage of it.

"An experienced financial advisor can use their knowledge to help you create a financial plan tailored to you," says Velkos. KeyBank offers a range of savings and investment services that can help you get the most out of your money – in tax season and beyond.

This material is presented for informational purposes only and should not be construed as individual tax or financial advice. KeyBank does not provide legal advice.

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Call Us

1-800-KEY2YOU® (539-2968)

Clients using a TDD/TTY device:

Clients using a relay service:

Schedule and Appointment

Schedule an Appointment

Talk to a Branch Manager in your neighborhood.

Schedule an appointment now