IN THIS CHAPTER
Getting the lowdown on taxes and tax rates
Lowering your income taxes on employment and investment income
Tapping into education tax breaks
Finding helpful tax resources
Making an audit as painless as possible
You pay a lot of money in taxes — probably more than you realize. Few people know just how much they pay in taxes each year. Most people remember whether they received a refund or owed money on their return. But when you file your tax return, all you’re doing is settling up with tax authorities over the amount of taxes you paid during the year versus the total tax you owe based on your income and deductions.
Some people feel lucky when they get an income tax refund, but all such a refund really indicates is that you overpaid your income taxes during the year. You should have had this money in your own account all along. If you’re consistently getting big income tax refunds, you need to pay less ...