Student Loans: Use Your Cash Or Take The Loan?

At Your Smart Money Moves, we get questions that we get from clients, through the website, or others that I see on the internet.   Here is a great one I recently came across around student loans. Q: I have about $40,000 saved up with an additional $6,000 in liquid assets that I am using as my emergency fund.  I’m attending graduate school, which will cost me about $50,000 by the time it’s over.  I will be working full time for the years of graduate school, so I believe that I will be able to save the extra $10,000 by the time I need to pay for it.    Should I pay the tuition out of pocket, or take out a low interest student loan at 5%?   I may be wanting to put a down payment on a house in the next five years, but I don’t want to begin accruing interest on student loans that I don’t necessarily have to incur. ...

Read More →

Do You Pay Your Taxes By Credit Card?

Some business owners or people who pay estimated tax payments end up paying their federal income taxes with a credit card. If you pay your income tax (including estimated tax payments) by credit or debit card, you can deduct the convenience fee you are charged by the card processor to pay using your credit or debit card. The deduction is claimed for the year in which the fee was charged to your card as a miscellaneous itemized deduction on line 23 of Schedule A (Form 1040) (and is subject to the 2% of the adjusted gross income floor). (Source: www.irs.gov) However, I always suggest that you look at what it net to you and don’t necessarily let the tax tail wag the dog. The deduction of those fees may sound great, but you really need to analyze what the cost of the convenience fee is relative to the rewards points/frequent flier miles you are earning by using the credit card ...

Read More →