I never thought I would be so glad to come to the end of the year as I am with 2020! But who isn’t?! Unfortunately, one of the saddest events this year was losing my dad to cancer. He fought a good fight—but after being in remission for six years, it came back with a vengeance. It is a hard reminder of all the things we need to do to make sure our affairs are in order. We have a great system for helping you get organized if you need some assistance.
One suggestion I have as we wrap up this year is to write an “End of the Year” letter to your spouse. Write down all the things you feel are important to know about where you are, where you are going and any changes that have occurred over the past year. If you have not already done so, this is also a good time to make a list of important contacts, where you keep valuable documents, combinations, passwords, who to call, etc. With all the changes that have occurred this year, you might have a lot of updating to do!
Also, did you know there is a new $300 tax deduction this year even if you do not itemize? Under the CARES (The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security) Act, individuals can claim an "above the line" deduction of up to $300 for cash donations made to charity during 2020. Cash donations include those made by check, credit card or debit card. Charitable donations cannot be in the form of securities, household items or other property to qualify for this tax savings. This deduction lowers both adjusted gross income and taxable income, leading to tax savings. Hurry, you only have until December 31st to help out your favorite charity! Visit irs.gov for more information.
The CARES Act also waives the 2020 Required Minimum Distributions (RMDs) for all retirement accounts. This includes inherited IRAs, SEP IRAs, SIMPLE IRAs, 401(k), 403(b) & 457(b) plans. As this is a true waiver, 2020 RMDs do not have to be made up in 2021.
Finally, as we wrap up this year, I challenge you to set your goals for 2021. Then, let us make a plan together for how you want to get there. Think about what has gone right and what needs to change. Be sure to discuss your goals with your significant other. It helps having an accountability partner and buy-in from them.
Call us today at (301) 733-7777 to set up an appointment to discuss your goals and plans for next year as well as the future. Goodbye 2020! Hello 2021!