PHOENIX — It's that time of the year when you should make your final 2020 money moves before the end of the year.
The year was turbulent for many -- job losses, medical bills, changed spending habits -- and they all may make a difference on your taxes for 2020.
The biggest tip of all: Keep documentation of everything and hang on to receipts.
CFA Scott Roelofs in Scottsdale spoke with 12 News and gave tips on these topics.
Talk about these scenarios with your tax professional, but know that time is running out to complete some of these steps.
If you worked for a business at any point in 2020, they will give you a W-2. If you received other income you may get a 1099.
If you've turned to Etsy or Uber to supplement income, you won't get a 1099 unless you hit $20,000 in payments and 200+ transactions.
If you lost a lot of income, it may be a good year to take care of something else that you've been putting off to avoid the taxes--selling a home for instance.
Check if your Flexible Spending Account expires at the end of the year and use that money if you can.
Some people turned to their 401K to supplement their income. Unless you are 59 and 1/2, there will be penalties on this money.
When filing your taxes you have the option to list out the deductions you're qualified for or opt for the standard deduction. So far the standard deduction remains the same at $12,400 for a single person or $24,800 for a married couple.
Many people take the standard deduction, but if you have thousands in unreimbursed medical expenses, you should look into itemizing your deductions.
Keep receipts for anything that is even remotely related to health: medical bills, over the counter medication, invoices for COVID-19 tests, massages, etc.
Also, keep receipts for anything you paid to make your space a work-from-home space. Right now there is no deduction for these expenses unless you're self-employed, but may be included in future legislation.
Deadlines and filing
The deadline for filing taxes is still April 15, 2021. The deadline for filing 2019 taxes was ultimately extended to July 2020, but a similar extension was not made for 2021 yet.
Tax software may have been your best friend in the past, but if you have multiple or new situations that will change your taxes, look into hiring a professional. They may be able to save you more money than it costs to hire them.
There are special tax credits for those impacted by the virus. Remember the $1,200 check? This acts as a credit for 2020, but you've likely already received the funds.
Businesses can also use a payroll tax credit to give employees impacted by COVID-19 paid time off.
There are two charitable tax credits that Arizonans can take to help the community. One is a donation to the Qualifying Charitable Organization and another to a Qualifying Foster Care Charitable Organization.
Single heads of household can donate $400 to each and married joint filers can donate $800 to each. These amounts will be credited on your 2020 taxes.
You may be able to send money from your IRA straight to a charity and reduce the amount of tax owed.
Look into these steps and consider taking action to save you money in the long term.
Class of 2021: What to expect this school year
This year has certainly changed how we approach education during a pandemic. For more ongoing coverage of the Class of 2021 watch our YouTube playlist and subscribe.