April 2012 may seem very far away and many taxpayers probably will not give too much thought to advice related to preparation for their 2011 tax returns. However, early tax preparation ensures that you maximize on all tax breaks and tax opportunities as you get through the year. This way, you will have a great tax return period come April 2012.

Furthermore, there are many tax breaks that are set to end this year and therefore, it is high time you capitalize on such tax benefits before they are no longer available. However, the process of tax preparation for your 2011 tax returns does not need to be as taxing (no pun intended) or tedious as what you just experienced prior to the April 2010 deadline. You can make tax-planning a continuous process and thereby, take full advantage of tax opportunities and avoid the quintessential last-minute rush. These tips will help you plan for the tax year ahead:

Capitalize on Deductions

Many taxpayers overlook tax deductions but this is one of the areas that can earn you a significant amount in refunds and reduce your tax liabilities. Even with standard deductions, you would still qualify for a number of other deductions. Some of the deductions you would consider for this year include any charity work or donations performed, any qualifying moving expenses – if you plan to relocate your residence, and other deductions relating to real estate. There are other deductions that lapse between the end of this year and end of 2012. You will need to check which deductions are still available for the current year and make proper planning to capitalize on such deductions. One of the deductions set to end in 2011 is the Conservation Easement Tax Break. Therefore, if you qualify for various deductions, especially those set to end this year, ensure that you take the most before these opportunities pass by.

Optimize on Various Credits

You should also plan accordingly to take advantage of any available tax credits that you could be eligible for. If you are in the military or are involved in other U.S. official overseas missions, you still have an opportunity to claim the First-time Home Buyer credit. If you signed for a home by March 2010 and manage to close the sale by June 2010, you can claim up to $ 8,000 tax credit for this. For the rest of homeowners, the tax credit opportunity is over as it ended on December 31, 2010.

Another tax credit that you may consider for this tax year is the home energy-efficient credit. If you purchase qualifying energy-efficient improvements for your home, you can claim a credit for the cost of the equipment. The newly adjusted tax credit is available between 2011and 2016, with different rules applying for different energy improvements. Therefore, you need to get acquainted with the energy improvement rules and the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 to know what you can capitalize on this tax year.

Other Tax Credit Extensions

There are other tax extensions that have been pushed to end in 2011 and 2012; this is the best time to plan and capitalize on such extensions. These extensions include the Making Work Pay tax credit that provides a tax credit for withholding done on qualifying wages, the reduced tax rates implemented in 2001 that lessen income tax rates by 2- 3.5%, and the lowered tax rates that apply to capital gains.

About The Author:

Robert L. Daniel and partners of Limon Whitaker & Morgan, for years have helped businesses and individuals Nationwide, with their delinquent IRS & State tax problems. The firm is based in Los Angeles, California USA. http://www.limonwhitaker.com / Tel:888.321.2430

You have permission to republish and use this article in your newsletter,website,or blog as long as you leave the article fully intact, and include this resource box at the end of the article.

Subscribe to our HW&W List

You’re about to get ‘Insider Access’ most people will never have, to bring more Health, Wealth, and Love into your Life!…

You have Successfully Subscribed!