Spend or give now, save later
While it might seem early to start thinking about your taxes-it's the holidays for crying out loud!-there are some quick and painless things you can do before the end of the year to help your tax situation come April. A little year-end planning will not only help you feel prepared as you enter 2012, it might also net a few hundred dollars at tax time!
Review your total medical costs from the year.
If your non-reimbursed medical expenses in a given year exceed 7.5% of your adjusted gross income, you can deduct them. If you're near the 7.5% requirement, it might be time to have that elective or necessary procedure you've been thinking about before the end of the year. Just make sure to double check with your accountant that your procedure is a qualifying deduction.
Make several charitable donations.
Not only will donating to charity get you in the holiday spirit, you'll also be able to deduct all contributions. This is true of clothing and household