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Tax Planning/Surprise Capital Gains Taxes Owed

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Question
Mr. Arnoff--
I relocated last summer to take a job 2.5 hours away in another city. I bought a house in the new city before selling my former one. I sold $100,000 worth of mutual funds that I had held four years in order to make the downpayment and bridge the period until I could sell my former house. The former house sold Dec. 15, 2014. I procrastinated on my taxes, and when I sat down last weekend to prepare them using a commonly available major tax online program, I watch the little meter begin to tally up a huge liability -- around $13,000 owed -- apparently from capital gains and income on the mutual funds I sold. My wife and I (both age 60) file jointly, and our gross income is around $224,000. My wife is eligible to put $6,500 into an IRA; I am not, since I am covered by a generous work-sponsored retirement account. At this stage, is there anything I can do before April 15 to reduce this tax bite? Neither my wife nor I claimed any decductions on our salaries.

Answer
Mike - You are asking a very general question.  You have not provided me with any other information other than your salaries and your sales of mutual funds.  In order to really analyze your situation, I would need to see all the facts.  Without them, I could not give you any more specific advice to you and would be doing you a disservice.  There are quite a few ways of reducing your taxes, but I don't have enough information to assist.  Would you be willing to contact me directly so I could ask you further information?  

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OWEN S. ARNOFF, EA

Expertise

As an Enrolled Agent, I am fully capable of providing tax advice as it relates to personal and business income taxes. Enrolled Agents are the only Federally licensed tax practitioners and are admitted to practice before all administrative functions of the IRS. My specialty is working with small business owners who file Schedule "C" and helping them to structure their business in such a way as to maximize as many tax advantages as possible. I also enjoy working with individuals who have both routine as well as complex tax situations. I prefer to concentrate on individuals and small business tax planning.

Experience

I have a 25 year background in financial services including tax, bookkeeping, insurance, real estate and securities. I was previously the Chief Financial Officer of a local and national franchise organization. I am currently semi-retired, but used to own (in partnership with another EA) an individual and small business financial engineering firm where I work with nearly 2,500 individuals and small business owners in nearly every state and almost every continent, assisting them in all aspects of their tax and financial well-being. I have prepared or reviewed more than 8,000 tax returns in my career.

Organizations
National Association of Tax Professionals

Publications
http://www.amazon.com/Owen-Arnoff/e/B00BLRIZNU/ref=ntt_dp_epwbk_2

Education/Credentials
Enrolled Agent, Admitted to Practice Before the IRS, Accredited Tax Preparer, Fellow of National Tax Practice Institute, Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor (1999-2011), Sleeter Group Certified QuickBooks Consultant, Life & Disability Insurance Agent License (California, Texas, Maine), Real Estate Agent License (California); Many years of continuing education in all these fields.

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