RE/MAX 440
John F. O'Hara

John F. O'Hara
731 W Skippack Pike  Blue Bell  PA 19422
Phone:  610-277-4060
Office:  215-643-3200
Cell:  267-481-1786
Fax:  267-354-6973

My Blog

Decoding Your Taxes

January 26, 2015 12:57 am

(Family Features) You don't need to be an expert on taxes or the new health care law to get it right. For the 70 percent of Americans who earned $60,000 or less in 2014, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) recommends using Free File ( to file their taxes. If you made more than $60,000, you still have a free option in Free File Fillable Forms.

When it comes to the health care law, almost everyone will need to do something new when filing a tax return this year. For each month in 2014, you and everyone on your return will need to do one of the following:
• Report healthcare coverage
If you and everyone on your tax return had health care coverage for all of 2014, simply check the "full year coverage" box when completing your return in the Free File software. For most people, that's it!

• Claim an exemption from coverage
If you did not have health care coverage for all or part of 2014, you may qualify for a coverage exemption. Free File will help you complete Form 8965 and file it with your tax return.

• Make a shared responsibility payment with your tax return
If you or your dependents had neither health care coverage nor an exemption, you may need to make a payment with your tax return. Free File will help you calculate your payment and report it on your tax return.
Most people will simply have to check a box to indicate they maintained health care coverage for the entire year.

Before you begin filing your taxes, gather all related documents:
- A copy of last year’s return
- Valid Social Security numbers for yourself, spouse and children
- All income statements, i.e. W-2 forms, from all employers
- Interest and dividend statements, i.e. 1099 forms
- Form 1099-G showing any state refunds
- Unemployment compensation amount
- Form 1095-A, Health Insurance Marketplace Statement, if you purchased coverage from a Health Insurance Marketplace
- Records of your own and your family members' health care insurance coverage, including employer provided, government, Marketplace or private coverage
(Note: If you or anyone on your return purchased insurance coverage from the Marketplace, you may be eligible for the premium tax credit. If you chose to have advance payments of the premium tax credit sent to your insurer in 2014, you must reconcile or compare the advance credit payments with the actual premium tax credit you are allowed to claim on your return.)

Once you’ve completed your return, you can also print a copy and e-file your federal taxes, absolutely free. With electronic filing, you will receive a confirmation within minutes that the IRS has accepted your return. Or, if it's not accepted, you can easily find out why. E-file helps make your tax return even more accurate, which means a quicker refund. To get your refund even faster, combine e-file with direct deposit.

The Free File software is available online 24/7.


Published with permission from RISMedia.


Household Finance Growth Expectations On the Rise

January 26, 2015 12:57 am

A recently released survey by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York concludes that household finances could see significant growth this year. The survey indicates that median household income growth expectations rose 0.3 percent, its highest level since the survey’s inception in June 2013.

The uptick in consumer household finance expectations was driven primarily by respondents from the South and in the 40- to 60-year-old segment. In contrast, median household spending expectations declined late last year, driven primarily by high-income respondents.

Expected changes in credit availability a year from now or compared to a year ago remained mostly unchanged.

In addition, the survey points to trends in inflation, including home and gasoline prices. Median home price change expectations remained steady at 3.7 percent; gasoline price change expectations continued a four-month decline to 3.8 percent. Median earnings growth expectations jumped to 2.7 percent – again, its highest level since the start of the survey in June 2013.

Source: Federal Reserve Bank of New York

Published with permission from RISMedia.