Tax Tip of the week

April 1, 2019

Unlock tax savings with a backdoor Roth IRA
Don't give up quickly if your path to contributing to a Roth IRA is blocked by tax law limits. Despite the obstacles, upper-income taxpayers may be able to take advantage of a backdoor Roth IRA.

IRA contribution basics

Unlike a traditional IRA where contributions may be wholly or partially tax-deductible, contributions to a Roth can never be deducted, but future distributions are generally exempt from tax. In contrast, traditional IRA distributions may be taxable in full.

The contribution limit for any combination of traditional and Roth IRAs for the 2018 tax year is $5,500 (increased to $6,000 for 2019). Plus, you can add on $1,000 if you're 50 or older.

But there are no income limits on taxpayers who contribute to traditional IRAs. With a Roth, the ability to contribute is phased out, based on your modified adjusted gross income (MAGI).

3 business website features you can't live without
Your website is a great opportunity to bring new customers to your business. It's also a great way to surprise and delight existing customers, encouraging them to return again and again.

As you're creating a business website, here are three things to keep in mind - three critical features your business website must have:

Clear business information

Putting clear information on your website sounds simple, but many businesses take a wrong turn. They get caught up in mission statements, stock imagery and aspirational copy, and they lose track of what their customers actually care about.

The truth is even the most beautiful website in the world will not generate return on investment for your business if customers can't find the information they need.

To get started, imagine yourself in your customers' shoes. What information should they know so they can interact with your business?

You'll probably list things like:

Creating financial goals as a couple
Financial goals make it possible for you and your partner to achieve the things you dream about. Here are three things you can do to create - and achieve - financial goals as a couple:

Start talking sooner rather than later.

Finances can be hard to talk about. People sometimes feel guilty about debt or ashamed that they don't make more money than they do. More than that, many people consider money to be a private thing that shouldn't be discussed with others.

However, the first step to setting financial goals as a couple is to start talking. And the sooner you start talking with your partner, the better prepared you'll be to make positive financial decisions. Saving for big purchase, for example, takes time and planning. Having a discussion early gives you more time to start saving.

Previous Tax Tips of the Week

January 28, 2019

Use your tax refund for an IRA contribution

You may already know that contributions to a traditional IRA may be deductible on your personal tax return (subject to certain limits). You're allowed to deduct a contribution on your 2018 return that is made as late as April 15.

But are you aware that you can use this year's tax refund to make your IRA contribution for the 2018 tax year?

Previous Business Tips of the Month

January 2019

6 tips to cut business costs in 2019

Early in the year is a perfect time to reassess your business, including organizational structure, policies, marketing and more. Reviewing company costs can also pay huge dividends throughout the year if you can create an expense-cutting plan and stick to it. Here are a few ideas for reducing costs with your bottom line in mind:

Previous Business Tips of the Month

December 2018

How not to lose your best employees
In today's tight labor market, finding and retaining top talent can be daunting. Ideally, you'll discover and hire workers who fit your company culture, sign on to its mission, and stick around for the long haul. But retaining your "best and brightest" can be a balancing act. Here are five suggestions:

Previous Financial Tips of the Month

January 2019

3 investment blunders everyone should avoid

Whether you're a seasoned investor or new to the game, you'll want to make a conscious effort to avoid these three common investment mistakes:

Previous Financial Tips of the Month

December 2018

Taking out a loan? Answer 3 questions first
For many Americans, debt has become a way of life. A recent LendingTree analysis of the latest Federal Reserve data showed that total U.S. consumer debt is on track to exceed $4 trillion this year. The analysis showed Americans collectively owe more than 26 percent of their monthly income on consumer debt, including car loans, credit card accounts and student or personal loans.