With only two full months left within the year, it’ll be time to start from the beginning again before we all know it. And as the seasons change, the way we spend our money changes to an extent. You may have recently spent money on school-related items, or even clothing for the upcoming colder temperatures. No matter what your plans are this Autumn, or Winter, these tips will assist in keeping your funds from becoming as bare as the trees we’ll soon see.
Tax Benefits on Education Costs
Students are back in school, and for some, this can easily become the most expensive time of year. However, you can search online and literally find tons of advice on how to financially capitalize during the “Back-to-School” season. Save those receipts and search either by yourself, or with a tax professional, for any possible deductions from spending. There are also a few tax credits that can be applied on a federal tax level.
For more information on educational deductions, check out the following blog:
Tax Credits on Back-to-School Education
Online Shopping for Winter Clothes
As temperatures become low, it would seem as prices on proper winter clothing are on the rise. Personally, the “rule-of-thumb” has been to buy what you need out of season… Get your winter clothes during the Summer, and summer clothes during Winter. But not everything can go as planned, and those clothes you need for the Winter may be a bit more expensive than the light, cotton-based clothing you had for the Summer.
Fortunately, winter clothes are also more durable, which can make second-hand and hand-me-down possibilities almost limitless. Find deals on lightly used, well-made, winter clothing options from second-hand websites (eBay, Craigslist), or your local thrift store (Goodwill, Plato’s Closet).
Lighting & Heat
This time of year brings shorter days, and even colder nights depending on where you’re located. Even though it gets dark quite earlier than before doesn’t mean you need to have every light in your place on. Make it a priority to turn off the lights and T.V. in a room that isn’t being used, even if it’s for a short time like to shower or something.
And as tempting as it may be, your heat doesn’t have to be on full blast each moment you’re home. Try dressing in layers while at home, or at the very least keep your head and feet covered with socks and headwear. Also, you should turn your heater off an hour or so before bed, grab your favorite comforter, and let it take over from there.
Affordable, Indoor Fun
With Summer gone, those seemingly free, outdoor activities are gone with it. But that doesn’t mean you have to resort to spending money at the movie theater or restaurant whenever you’re bored, or have to entertain. Try enjoying your leisure time with your favorite board or video game. How about enjoying a good book, or having friends over for store-bought appetizers? What sounds more appealing… Being out in the cold with a bunch of others, who would rather not be there either, or sipping hot chocolate while getting lost in a movie or T.V. series from your favorite streaming service?
Open Enrollment for Health & Benefits
For the majority of us, this time of year also brings the only time we can change health and benefit plans for ourselves, or our family. Take this opportunity to carefully examine which packages are best. You may even find similar services offered through your employment that are cheaper than purchasing directly. You can also take advantage of this time of year by either joining, or changing contributions, to your 401K plan; you’ll definitely want to look into company-matching contributions.
Take the time to handle these decisions now, and you may find yourself not only saving money during the cooler seasons, but also throughout the entire year. As always, these are just general tips and suggestions. For any specific situations, it would be best to get in contact with your local tax professional. We, at ExpressTaxFilings, wish you all a safe, and warm, end-of-year season.
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