# Random tax question, please....

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**1****Random tax question, please....**

Situation A

Married filing jointly no kids. Claiming Standard deduction ($11.7K?)

Situation B

Married filing jointly no kids.

Have a mortgage

1. Interest on mortgage roughly 1,700 a month

2. Donations 900 a year

3. Personal car total DMV fees roughly 200 a year

4. Payping 7K California tax, 18K federal, 4.5K SS, 1.8K medicare, 1K CA CDI

Question. Situation A is straight, I get 11.7K deduction. In situation B, how much deduction can I get? Are there any other itemized deduction we can take?

Thanks in advance

Married filing jointly no kids. Claiming Standard deduction ($11.7K?)

Situation B

Married filing jointly no kids.

Have a mortgage

1. Interest on mortgage roughly 1,700 a month

2. Donations 900 a year

3. Personal car total DMV fees roughly 200 a year

4. Payping 7K California tax, 18K federal, 4.5K SS, 1.8K medicare, 1K CA CDI

Question. Situation A is straight, I get 11.7K deduction. In situation B, how much deduction can I get? Are there any other itemized deduction we can take?

Thanks in advance

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**2****Re: Random tax question, please....**

Get yourself a copy of Schedule A (and instructions) from irs.gov. It's fairly short and sweet.

But situation B is clearly going to win.

But situation B is clearly going to win.

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**4**Heading for Poppyland

Joined: Jul 2007

Location: North Norfolk and northern New York State

Posts: 11,088

**Re: Random tax question, please....**

Everyone's situation is different but we have always, in twenty five plus years of filing, taken the standard deduction and not bothered with itemizing. Probably because since our house cost us $50,000, even when we had a mortgage it was peanuts, and our property taxes are not much either. You simply have to go through all possible deductions and see how you fare.

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**5****Re: Random tax question, please....**

So I can deduct

1700 a month interest

600 a month property taxes

900 a year of donations (?)

registration fee, not sure how much let's say 100 a year

I think the state taxes I pay is around 5000 a year

So that would be 1700*12+600*12+900+100+5000 = 33,600 minus 11700 which I was getting without itemizing. So the incremental deductions are 21,900...

Am I remotely right / doing this right?

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**6****Re: Random tax question, please....**

So I can deduct

1700 a month interest

600 a month property taxes

900 a year of donations (?)

registration fee, not sure how much let's say 100 a year

I think the state taxes I pay is around 5000 a year

So that would be 1700*12+600*12+900+100+5000 = 33,600 minus 11700 which I was getting without itemizing. So the incremental deductions are 21,900...

Am I remotely right / doing this right?

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**7**Lost in BE Cyberspace

Joined: Jan 2008

Posts: 41,518

**Re: Random tax question, please....**

So I can deduct

1700 a month interest

600 a month property taxes

900 a year of donations (?)

registration fee, not sure how much let's say 100 a year

I think the state taxes I pay is around 5000 a year

So that would be 1700*12+600*12+900+100+5000 = 33,600 minus 11700 which I was getting without itemizing. So the incremental deductions are 21,900...

Am I remotely right / doing this right?

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**8**BE Forum Addict

Joined: Jun 2010

Posts: 2,847

**Re: Random tax question, please....**

Doesn't Turbo Tax and similar software tell you which way to go anyway?

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**9****Re: Random tax question, please....**

So can I say (roughly) the incremental tax deduction....

Federal taxes = (33,600-11700) * my average tax rate

State taxes = (33,600-11700- 5,000) * my average tax rate?

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**10****Re: Random tax question, please....**

Beware of the Alternative Minimum Tax. If you do too well with itemizing may get caught there.

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**12****Re: Random tax question, please....**

Use the following tax calculator to determine your approximate federal tax. The deductions are deductions from income prior to calculating taxes and not tax credits.

http://www.dinkytown.net/java/Tax1040.html

Below the calculator are the marginal tax brackets which indicates what percentage each portion of your income is taxed after deductions and exemptions are taken. Therefore the percentage saved for each dollar of deduction is the percentage given in the highest tax bracket on your taxable income. Therefore if your income after deductions and exemptions is $120,000 (marginal tax bracket 25% for married filing jointly), you'll save 0.25 per dollar for deductions taken (part could possibly be 28% or more if you had more than $22,700 of deductions.

Alternate minimum tax (AMT) shouldn't have any effect unless you income is very high and deductions are very large.

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**13****Re: Random tax question, please....**

Use the following tax calculator to determine your approximate federal tax. The deductions are deductions from income prior to calculating taxes and not tax credits.

http://www.dinkytown.net/java/Tax1040.html

Below the calculator are the marginal tax brackets which indicates what percentage each portion of your income is taxed after deductions and exemptions are taken. Therefore the percentage saved for each dollar of deduction is the percentage given in the highest tax bracket on your taxable income. Therefore if your income after deductions and exemptions is $120,000 (marginal tax bracket 25% for married filing jointly), you'll save 0.25 per dollar for deductions taken (part could possibly be 28% or more if you had more than $22,700 of deductions.

Alternate minimum tax (AMT) shouldn't have any effect unless you income is very high and deductions are very large.

Let me explain my numbers. As I said in my first post - all I am trying to do is to calculate incremental tax deduction between situation A and B.

You thought that 33,700 exemptions looks about right but rightly pointed out that that's not the case for State.

So I just put two sets of data

For Federal it will be entire 33,700 minus the 11,700 I am claiming under situation A

For State it will be 33,700 minus State taxes (as I don't get to state tax deduction for State taxes if that makes sense) minus the 11,700 I am already claiming under situation A.

*[I assume that the 11,700 standard deduction is taken for State and Federal returns?]*

The above 2 gives me 'incremental deductions' and I understand it's not tax credit but the tax benefit is dependant on my tax bracket. I just wanted to quantify incremental tax deductions that's all.

Does that make sense?

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**14**BE Forum Addict

Joined: Mar 2008

Location: Santa Cruz, CA

Posts: 4,896

**Re: Random tax question, please....**

In other words, the possibility that you might be liable for AMT does not mean that you shouldn't itemize - it is just something that you need to be aware of.

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**15****Re: Random tax question, please....**

Thanks.

Let me explain my numbers. As I said in my first post - all I am trying to do is to calculate incremental tax deduction between situation A and B.

You thought that 33,700 exemptions looks about right but rightly pointed out that that's not the case for State.

So I just put two sets of data

For Federal it will be entire 33,700 minus the 11,700 I am claiming under situation A

For State it will be 33,700 minus State taxes (as I don't get to state tax deduction for State taxes if that makes sense) minus the 11,700 I am already claiming under situation A.

The above 2 gives me 'incremental deductions' and I understand it's not tax credit but the tax benefit is dependant on my tax bracket. I just wanted to quantify incremental tax deductions that's all.

Does that make sense?

Let me explain my numbers. As I said in my first post - all I am trying to do is to calculate incremental tax deduction between situation A and B.

You thought that 33,700 exemptions looks about right but rightly pointed out that that's not the case for State.

So I just put two sets of data

For Federal it will be entire 33,700 minus the 11,700 I am claiming under situation A

For State it will be 33,700 minus State taxes (as I don't get to state tax deduction for State taxes if that makes sense) minus the 11,700 I am already claiming under situation A.

*[I assume that the 11,700 standard deduction is taken for State and Federal returns?]*The above 2 gives me 'incremental deductions' and I understand it's not tax credit but the tax benefit is dependant on my tax bracket. I just wanted to quantify incremental tax deductions that's all.

Does that make sense?

The following is a tax calculator for the state of California.

https://www.ftb.ca.gov/online/Tax_Calculator/

So try the tax calculators first.