Ginita Wall, CPA, CFP®

Are You a Solopreneur Looking to Buy a Home? Here’s What You Need to Know

Being self-employed has its downsides and its benefits. Downsides include no paid vacation or holidays and the never-ending need to continually find customers. Benefits include an ability to set your own hours, no limits on your income, and lots of potential business deductions. These deductions can help you save lots of money on your taxes, …

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Twelve Tax Myths

It’s what you think you know that really isn’t true that can hurt you. A study by the American Institute of CPAs identified twelve misconceptions that taxpayers have about their income taxes. Myth #1 If you apply for an extension to file your taxes, you’re more likely to be audited. Studies have never found any …

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Is Divorce on Your Holiday Shopping List?

Eight Steps from the Experts on Handling the Holidays when Your Marriage No Longer Feels Like a “Gift” Thinking about shopping lists, presents, parties, and…divorce?  Holidays are usually a time for reconnecting, but if you are married — and not so happily — seasonal preparations can put major strain on relationships that are already teetering …

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Here are Six Important Assets You Can’t Afford to Overlook During Your Divorce

My husband and I have drawn up a list of what we own and we have tentatively agreed on how to split everything in our divorce. I’m afraid we might have missed listing something. Can you help? As a financial divorce consultant, I often review final property settlements to determine additional tax and financial considerations …

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The Benefits of Being Married Ten Years

My nine-year marriage has been rocky for quite some time, and my husband and I periodically talk about divorce. A friend told me I should stick it out a while longer since there are benefits to being married ten years or longer. What are those benefits?

Do You Have to Worry About Capital Gains Tax?

When you start digging into the tax code – not something we’d recommend unless you are suffering from severe insomnia – you’ll quickly notice that there are a seemingly endless number of taxes. Fortunately, many of these taxes are highly specialized and don’t affect most people. However, some of these taxes occasionally pop up in …

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Widows, Do You Have to Pay a Capital Gains Tax If You Sell Your House After the Death of Your Spouse?

If your husband has recently passed away, you may decide it’s time to sell your home. Maybe it holds too many sad memories, or it’s just too big for you to handle on your own, or you simply want to live closer to your children. Whatever your reason, if your house has increased in value …

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Five Reasons Why You Should Request Alimony as a Lump Sum During Your Divorce

If you are in a position to receive alimony as a part of your divorce, the settlement (or the judge) may specify exactly how much your ex-spouse is obligated to pay and over what time period. Normally, your ex would be required to send you a monthly alimony payment, but you can attempt to negotiate …

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In Sickness, Health…and Debt? Are You Responsible for Your Spouse’s Debts?

When you join your life with another in marriage, you make the promise to share all the joys and challenges of the future together…but does that include debt? What if you are a diligent saver while your husband comes into the marriage with $50,000 in student loan debt? What if he dreams of starting his …

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Riding Out Market Storms

Volatility can make your stomach churn, and the volatility of an unstable stock market causes even the most-savvy investors to reach for the Pepto-Bismol. So you may be surprised to hear stock market volatility can actually be a good thing — at least for your retirement savings. Say you are investing $500 in a stock mutual …

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Married for More Than Ten Years? You Can Collect Social Security Benefits From Your Ex-Spouse!

If you were married to your ex-spouse for ten or more years, then you are eligible for very important Social Security benefits that could drastically increase how much Social Security you receive each month. Who doesn’t want a bigger Social Security check each month? No one, that’s right! So keep reading. Even if you are …

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Three Things Women Need To Do Right Now To Protect Their Retirement

At WIFE.org, we don’t think retiring smart has to be complicated. A few good habits can make the difference between working a part-time job in retirement to make ends meet or spending more time with your grandchildren and taking a cruise each year. Here are three simple things you can start doing today to get …

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Why Women Need To Think Differently About Retirement

Ladies, we know that “one size doesn’t fit all,” and that is especially true when it comes to planning for retirement. When we look to the future and retirement, we can’t think like men. Let’s look at three unique challenges that force women to think differently about retirement: A Longer Retirement Congratulations! If you were …

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Are financial problems making you feel stupid? Scientists have figured out why.

If your month lasts longer than your money, don’t berate yourself for stupidity. When financial stress gets you down, your mind is slower as well, scientists have found. Most people tested lost about 13 IQ points when they were worried about money. That’s because stress slows your brain and makes thinking more difficult, the same …

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Don’t get taken in by the latest financial scam

Can you spot a financial scam. The new Financial Fraud and Susceptibility survey bets you can’t. About 40% of the 2,400 people surveyed recently said they’d be enticed by a fully guaranteed investment, especially if it offered an annual return of 110%. Really? Bernie Madoff’s guaranteed return rate was only 12%, and that was clearly …

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Home transfers in divorce can render mortgage interest non-deductible.

There are three parties to every divorce: the husband, the wife, and Uncle Sam. Uncle Sam is very picky about interest deductions on home mortgages, and a misstep can cost your client a tax deduction. Here’s a common situation that can trip you up, and ways to get around it. Your client agrees to transfer …

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Should You file Taxes Jointly or Separately?

It’s tax time again, and many are wondering whether they should file jointly with their soon-to-be-ex-spouse. There are many factors that I consider when I meet with clients to determine their best course of action for filing taxes. If you suspect your spouse is cheating on taxes by under-reporting income or over-reporting deductions, you can …

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25 Ways to Divorce Without Going Broke

Excerpted from the booklet “150 Ways to Divorce Without Going Broke“ Divorce is the largest single financial transaction of most people’s lives, raising important questions that demand immediate answers. Here are some helpful tips on every aspect of divorce, including: before the divorce, gathering records, alimony, tax returns, navigating the divorce, accumulating cash, hiring an …

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Standing Up To The IRS

When you receive a plain brown envelope marked “Official US Business” from the Internal Revenue Service, it’s enough to strike terror in your heart. Your first instinct to the deficiency notice inside might be to pay them whatever they want, but don’t do it. There are four common notices that you might receive from the …

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Business Deductions for Employees

Even if you don’t have your own business, you may have some expenses that are tax deductible. If you are a salaried professional, teacher or other employee, here are some deductions you shouldn’t overlook. Dues for professional organizations Personal supplies, such as pens, pencils, briefcases, calculators, executive diaries, etc. Fees for credit cards used exclusively …

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Chicken Little Investing

“The sky is falling, the sky is falling” cried Chicken Little.  Some investors may agree.  What should you do If you find the stock market plummeting. 1.  Don’t panic. Remember that panic is not an effective, long-term investment strategy. But when the Nasdaq plunges as much as 5% a day for several days running, it’s hard …

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Surfing The Business Cycle

Selecting stocks can be tough. But stock selection is much easier once you understand stock market and economic cycles. Diversification is key. To build a portfolio, you should own several different stocks in several of the eight market sectors: consumer cyclicals, technology, financial, energy, industrials, basic materials, consumer non-cyclicals and utilities. Decide which of the …

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IRA Blunders

If you have been contributing to Individual Retirement Accounts over the years or have rolled a lump-sum pension distribution into an IRA, you have taken solid steps toward building a strong retirement nest egg. But three common blunders can keep you from getting the greatest income possible when you retire. Blunder #1. Too many IRA …

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It’s Never Too Early to Start Planning for Your Retirement

Trouble is, there’s always so much more in your life that requires time and money that it’s not always easy to devote those precious resources to a retirement that is years away. Here are five painless ways you can begin saving for your retirement without unduly busting your budget. 1. Let your employer do it. …

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I Can’t Believe I Forgot To Save For My Retirement!

Most people in their twenties and thirties have other things on their minds than retirement. But as we get older, we suddenly realize we have to save for retirement! If you’ve procrastinated in planning for retirement, you may not be as far behind as you think. Perhaps your employment benefits include a defined benefit retirement …

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These Long-Term Tax Strategies Will Help Savvy Women Stretch Their Dollars Further

Politicians are always promising to completely revamp the tax code, but on the whole, our current tax policy has remained stubbornly consistent, with only minor changes over the years. Likewise, smart tax strategies will stand the test of time. As tax season bears down upon us, here are some reliable and long-term tax strategies that …

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