Seven years ago, my parents gave their house in upstate New York to the children and their spouses. (There are five of us; four are married.) My parents paid $150,000 for the house, and now it's worth more than $500,000. Now that both parents have passed away, we're thinking of selling the home. But we're not sure if that's a good idea from a tax perspective and whether we'd qualify for the home-sale exclusion. What do you think?
Small Business Tax
Section 179 vehicles should be a key part of your small business tax deduction strategies. Can Section 179 property fit in with your business tax strategies?
Let Business Management Daily help you get each and every rental property depreciation credit and business tax deduction you’re entitled to.
Q: In a recent Mail Call, you correctly answered a reader by saying that a tax refund would not be reduced by a Roth IRA contribution. (8/11/03 issue) But in stating that Roth IRA contributions don't affect current tax liability, aren't you omitting the use of the retirement tax credit? M.A.C., Union Beach, N.J.
The 2003 tax law slashed income taxes for most taxpayers. But what if you show a net operating loss (NOL) and no taxable income at year-end?
Q: The annuity I bought a couple of years ago charges high maintenance fees. Will I have to pay any penalties if I withdraw my funds and switch to a different investment with lower fees? C.R., Mt. Pocono, Pa.
If you're still handling payroll yourself, you know it's time consuming and prone to errors. So here's some good news: A new crop of online payroll services are popping up and—no coincidence—the costs are dropping fast.
Q: We have a vacation home at the Jersey shore. We normally only use the house ourselves two weeks in September. But this year my teenage son and his friends spent a few weekends there in the fall. Do we have a tax problem? G.A., Mahwah, N.J.
You probably saw all the fanfare this month surrounding President Bush's signing of the Medicare reform law, the biggest rewrite of Medicare in its nearly 40 year history.
But, unless you're on Medicare, you probably thought the Medicare Prescription Drug and Modernization Act of 2003 contained nothing for you. Well, you were wrong.
Q: I have an outstanding loan for my oldest child's college tuition. I've received some credit card offers with lower rates than the existing college loan. Should I take one to pay off the college loan? K.H., Binghamton, N.Y.
Q: We own S corporation shares bought more than 12 months ago at $12 per share that now have a market value of $25 per share. If the shareholder dies, is the basis adjusted to market value at death? T.M., via e-mail
Q: I'm buying rental property with my brother for $425,000. Although we are joint owners with 50 percent ownership rights each, I'm putting $50,000 down, and he is putting down only $30,000. Will I be taxed on more of the rental income? S.S., via e-mail