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New Job / Never Taken Taxes Serious

Recently I received a promotion and increase in pay. Effective 11/1 I will have an annual salary of 90K + 25% bonus contingent on some performance factors. I work in the hotel business.

I’ve never used a tax professional and I understand that might be forbidden but I want to take taxes serious as I increase my salary and grow my career. I want to take advantage of tax savings available; however, I understand there may not be any because my salary isn’t substantial.

What should I do in 2023 to ensure I’m positioned to benefit the most within the current laws? I live in Arizona.

Anything else I should know is super helpful.

TIA

Is taking out a loan for a down-payment on a house a good idea?

I’m not sure if this is common, uncommon, or just completely dumb to try and do. But feedback and input would be greatly appreciated.

I make about $38,000/year after insurance, taxes, 401k, etc. This is my take home pay.

I have about $21,000 in my savings and checking combined. My credit card is always paid down and has a $7,000 limit.

I spoke with a mortgage lender rep a few months ago to see if I could start the process to get pre qualified for a home loan. After the conversation, I felt very defeated because there were a lot more closing fees, inspection fees, insurance, etc. that I did not know went into buying a home.

If I have to find a place to rent for another year or two, that will be $1,000+ a month, and will leave me with only $500-600 that I can put away into savings for a house down-payment. Starting next year – after student debt relief kicks in – I will still have an outstanding balance and be paying around $300/month on those to aggressively pay it down (and increase my payments each year as I make more money).

I just feel impatient because many people have pointed out to me that their mortgage payments are much less than it costs to rent every month. Should I be more patient and wait for a big promotion to pull the trigger on a house hunt?

Also I suppose a possible pro to paying that much in rent would be not having to pay to fix things around the house if it breaks. But I think it would be awesome to own a house and start owning some equity that will pay myself back later on.

Thoughts? Opinions? Tips?

To clarify/tl;dr: is it a smart or dumb move to take out a loan or rack up credit card debt to afford a down-payment and closing fees, in addition/separate to taking on a mortgage loan?

Cancel credit card I don’t really use anymore and apply for another for the benefits?

Background: the credit card I want to cancel is a basic one (it used to be a college student CC but the bank changed it semi-recently as I graduated over a year ago now). I opened it as my first CC but don’t really use it and it doesn’t have a big limit or any good perks. I’ve had it for about four years now. It’s through Wells Fargo if that helps (WF is terrible, I know). I currently have another CC I like for the perks too. However, I’d like to apply for another CC for the rewards. Additionally, I don’t owe anything on the WF CC or my other one, and don’t rack up debt on my CCs as I just use them to pay to get rewards/points and immediately pay them off. Lastly, my credit score is around 750 and I’m 24 with no missed CC payments ever. Thanks for any help in advance!

Wanting to get my deposit back at the end of the month

Hey everyone, so today I gotten approved for an apartment that is significantly closer to both of my jobs, I currently live 2 towns over due to a failed relationship and my uncle’s landlord gifted me the apartment out of kindness. However, I recently started a tattooing job and transferred back to a store so my commute wouldn’t be so long from one job to the next. However, getting back home is costing me roughly $80 (to and from) a day just to get to work and go home.
Currently, I applied for an apartment and gotten approved for it, however I am just under the security and rent payment by $100. I figure to sit my current landlord down and talk with her about my decision to move out and move over to my new apartment at the end of the month. Thing is, I am unsure if I would be getting my deposit by November 1st.

Would you suggest I push the date to move in a week? (I get paid the following week of November 1st) or ask for the deposit back first, pay off my rent, then move out?

Any advice would be appreciated

Will I qualify for head of household?

I will be having a kid at the end of the year. I am single, but live with my partner who will be adopting the baby. Currently, we basically split bills/food 50/50 the only thing is I probably pay for more utilities. The kid will be going on my insurance.

I’m just try to get an idea of how I should/could file for this year. I would have less of a tax burden by filing HOH, but I’m not sure how it works exactly with the 50% of expenses situation.

TIA

Wealthy folks, if you had to start all over, would you put your money into a venture you were NOT passionate about? e.g. real estate can build wealth but I don’t care to be a landlord.

I’m mid 30s with a family. I have some cash, but other then ibonds, I don’t see any options that excite me for wealth building.

Throw it all in the stock market? I’d like to do something over the next 20 years but i guess just a w2 is all I can think of at this time. Seems lame.

I’m watching the founder about ray croc. Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “You are what you think all day long.” Well ever since I was in high school I just wanted an easy life. Well, I have it. 2 kids. Stay at home wife. House. Etc. I feel I can accomplish anything I want but there isn’t anything I really want. My day to day life is easy. Almost zero stress.

But I see people with businesses, lake houses, and I think I would enjoy it. I’d hate to waste my time here and not accomplish something really great. And I’d kill for a house on the water.

So do I push myself into a wealth building endeavor I am not passionate about all for the sake of making more money?

Is this a scenario where a HDHP does not make sense?

My husband is a state employee. His open enrollment period is coming up, so I am looking at his insurance options.

I have my own plan through my employer.

He is currently on their low tier 75/25 plan for $76/month. $2500 deductible/$6000 OOP max.

He has the option to switch to a HDHP for $62/month. Deductible is $3500/OOP Max $6500.

He is a healthy guy that never (literally 🙃 that’s a separate issue) goes to the doctor. We are trying to have a baby, who would go under his insurance plan.

I’m wondering if the switch should be made. I love the triple advantage of an HSA.

His employer does not contribute to his HSA at all.

When we have a kid we would probably change tiers to an 80/20 plan.

Nixing full coverage health insurance when medical tourism is an option?

Curious to hear thoughts on this. My employers medium tier health plan is $250 a month for my part of the premium. Primary/specialist visits are $30/$75. Hospital is $500/day. I rarely utilize my insurance, and even without it I have access to a $25/visit telehealth option that I use when needed.

They also offer dental insurance for $30/month which basically covers nothing except 2 cleanings a year. I need to get a dental crown done, which will cost $700 OOP

I recently discovered the beauty of medical tourism in Colombia. I can go there and get all my medical needs taken care of for about 10% of US cost, and with high quality doctors and medical equipment.

Is it foolish to go down to the lowest plan of coverage that my job offers (just for emergencies?) and utilize medical tourism for all other needs? This plan would cost me $30/month with a 5,000 OOP max for the year in case of emergency hospitalization

I am in my early 30s and with no medical issues.