Good financial management requires being on top of your tax situation. Recently I was speaking with a client who regretted not establishing a better tax plan for 2008. Her income varies significantly from year to year and she could have received payment in January 2009 instead of December 2008 for work to be done in 2009. She wasn’t sure whether this would have reduced her taxable income for 2008 which had been a good year but felt that it probably would have.
Have you met with your CPA to establish a plan for 2009? It is certainly not too late. I suggest keeping a running tally of your expected income for the current tax year. This is especially important if you are in a commission type of business with irregular income that varies from year to year. A very simple spreadsheet can provide valuable information in your tax planning. Put a regular day in your planner to update your spreadsheet monthly such as on the second Tuesday of the month. If you are like me this will make it more likely to happen. Remember it will be too late to plan for 2009 in February 2010 when you are getting together your tax information.
Make a commitment to become more knowledgeable about your taxes. There are numerous easy to read books on the topic. Set aside an hour to visit your favorite bookstore and choose one. Entice yourself by sitting outside in the beautiful spring weather read with a highlighter and mark strategies that may work for you. This will prepare you for meeting with your CPA as you will likely have some tax saving ideas that you can ask her about.