Micala Ricketts
Micala Ricketts

It’s that time of year again—time for year-end tax planning. Not only will your clients benefit from the help you give them in navigating tax reform, but tax season will also go more smoothly for you if you plan ahead. Plus, the more advisory services you offer, the more you can add to your bottom line. Who doesn’t want to bring in extra money around the holidays? So, we’ve compiled a checklist of 17 actions for you to consider for your clients and yourself before January 1.  

You can get the downloadable version here.

Tax Planning Your Clients

  • Deferring income or bonuses if advantageous to do so (freelance clients should consider deferring billing).
  • Paying all 2017 state tax liability before January to receive a federal deduction.
  • Looking over available tax credits.
  • Maximizing cash and non-cash charitable contributions. Consider gifting appreciated stocks or mutual funds to charitable organizations.
  • Bunching deductible expenses. Using a credit card may be appropriate.
  • Checking the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) and how certain year-end actions may affect it.
  • Checking if the “kiddie tax” applies to your clients.
  • Paying the first installment of 2018 property taxes.
  • Maximizing retirement account contributions, and consider if a Roth conversion is better for long-term tax benefits.
  • Taking required minimum distributions from retirement plans.
  • Purchasing equipment and putting it to use to qualify for the business property expensing option (2017 is the last year business owners can take advantage of 50% bonus depreciation).
  • Looking over special tax relief for victims of Hurricane Harvey, Irma, or Maria

Tax Planning For You

  • Renewing your PTIN.
  • Reviewing changes in tax law.
  • Checking in with clients and offering advisory services.
  • Scheduling early appointments with clients who are typically prepared.
  • Marketing advisory services to potential clients.

Want access to another handy, downloadable checklist? Check out our Form 433-A due diligence checklist here.

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