It only takes a quick step outside your front door for you to know that summer is in full force here in McAllen and the Greater Rio Grande Valley. The sun is shining brightly and everyone is searching for a way to enjoy the outdoors.
Whether you head to the city pool or are looking at more organized summer activities, we here at Abigail Y. Murray CPA in McAllen, Texas know that you might have to reach into your pockets to pay for those summer programs you and your family can enjoy.
But that doesn’t mean that you can’t save some money! There are plenty of cost-cutting and tax-deductible activities out there for those of us who do our homework.
Summer Fun Doesn’t Have to Cost a Ton
The first activities to start looking into are the ones that will not cost your family anything at all. These opportunities are all around you and ones that you may already be well-acquainted with.
Your local park and recreation department is sure to have a number of activities and events you and your family can enjoy at little to no costs. Your church and other youth groups will also likely offer summer programs, such as vacation Bible school.
A little Google searching will also turn up free arts and craft events as well as day camps occurring throughout your city.
One of the best places to find free activities for your children is at your local library. These are designed not only to keep them learning while away from school but also offer outlets for their imagination and creativity.
A Membership Pays Back in More Ways Than One
Even if what your city library is offering comes with a price or other membership fee, you will probably still be able to qualify for a tax deduction on that cost at the end of the year.
The same is true for memberships at many museums, zoos, and other facilities all over the state and country. Having a membership with these sorts of organizations will not only provide an enjoyable activity for you and your family to enjoy but will also likely be tax deductible.
Your membership has the added bonus of helping support these organizations in your community. The money brought in not only helps to maintain both facilities and staff but also promotes their growth.
The scope of nonprofit organizations is much wider than just animal care centers and museums, though. Your community is sure to have other places you can find something that fits your family’s varied interests.Memberships count as charitable donations #MurrayCPA #Summer #TaxTip Click To Tweet
Paying For Childcare Can Be Tax-Deductible
Sometimes working parents (and those looking for work) have to enroll their children in summer programs while they are on the clock, as de facto child care.
This usually applies to parents with children 13-years-old and under and these programs can come with added costs. Just having someone to provide child care is not enough to eliminate stress because of the side effect it can have on personal finances.
If that’s the case, there are five important facts for everyone to remember about The Child and Dependent Care Credit, which is aimed at providing financial relief from what you pay for childcare in the summer, as well as the rest of the year:
- Overnight camps and other forms of care can’t be used toward this credit.
- Day camps will likely be covered.
- Where you kids are being taken care of, whether at home or at a facility away from your house, will not count against you if you qualify for this tax credit.
- You can be credited up to 35% of expenses that qualify for this credit; the total is determined by your income
- Up to $3,000 of expenses for one child and $6,000 for two can be used to determine how much you are credited.
There are a number of items to consider when determining if someone qualifies for this tax credit.
For anyone interested in learning more please feel free to contact our McAllen, Texas office today or you can look through Publication 503 from the IRS.
Abigail Y. Murray CPA, LLC is here to answer any questions you might have about how summer activities can affect your taxes.
The last thing anyone wants to worry about is what effect the money going into enjoying the summer months will have on the rest of your year.
Abigail Y. Murray CPA is happy to remind you that there is no cause for concern. There is a good chance that the plans you have for your kids, including camps and other programs, are likely to come with the added benefit of a tax deduction or credit at the end of the year.
Contact us today at 956-800-5600 with any questions you have about your summer finances. Don’t go through the rest of the year without the answers you need.