Although it doesn’t necessarily work out that way, the tax system in the U.S. is intended to be progressive. This means that more you earn, the more tax you should pay. However, those in higher tax brackets have several strategies to minimize their tax liability.
When you realize a profit from selling property you are subject to capital gains tax. If you hold the property a year or longer your tax bill will be less. This means you can reduce taxes by increasing your investments. If the investment results in a loss, you may be able to deduct the amount of the loss from your taxes.
You can donate up to 50% of your adjusted gross income to charity and deduct it from your taxable income. This strategy often results in moving you to a lower tax bracket. It’s important to get documentation of the donation from the nonprofit organization.
If you’re fortunate enough to give away substantial amounts of money or property during your lifetime, your generosity may be subject to federal gift tax rules. After death, your money and property, known as your estate, may also be subject to federal estate tax. However, you can give money away during your lifetime or leave certain amounts to your heirs that are exempt from taxation.
The tax treatment of life insurance so far hasn’t changed much. While the primary purpose of life insurance is to provide a death benefit to the insured’s beneficiaries, certain types of life insurance policies can also function as tax-preferred investment vehicles.
Fixed Indexed Annuities
Fixed indexed annuities provide capital preservation combined with the opportunity to earn interest based on changes in an external market index like the S&P 500. Because you’re not actually participating in the market, your money is not at risk. Tax deferral is one of the many benefits these products can offer.
The important thing to remember – talk to you financial advisor before using any of these strategies.