Episode-417- Reducing Your Tax Footprint

I have grown weary of the term “carbon footprint”, it drives me nuts that ever TV show, article, online video or blog post about energy independence has to use the dreaded term.  So I figured today we could talk about the useful reduction of a real footprint that is to large for most of us, the dreaded tax footprint.

Join me today as we discuss…

  • What is a tax footprint – how do you calculate one
  • What taxes do we pay other than income, social security and medicare
  • What are some of the hidden taxes we pay with out even realizing it
  • Following a tax payer for a day, how much taxation does he create
  • Ways to reduce your tax foot print
    • Take ever legal deduction, create deductions
    • Run a small business (two edges to the sword)
    • Install alternative energy
    • Barter when ever you can
    • Grow your own food
    • Buy from local growers (pay cash or barter)
    • Brew beer, make wine, grow tobacco
    • Drive a primary vehicle that is highly fuel efficient
    • Camp when you travel
    • Make sure to file homestead exemptions
    • Buy rural land as an investment with low property tax
    • Fight your properties assessed value
    • Reload ammunition
    • Cast bullets
    • Invest in metal with small quantity cash buys
    • Convert cash into long term assets
    • Understand the concept of  “cash flows = tax grows”
    • Ask two questions before you spend each dollar

Additional Resources for Today’s Show

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12 Responses to Episode-417- Reducing Your Tax Footprint

  1. Jack! Great show! Great tips!

    If you will let me add a tip I discovered that keeps me/helps me from making poor purchases. Whenever I’m about to buy something I think ($X.XX) isn’t a bad price, then I think about how long I had to work at a job I hate to buy that. Usually I walk away when I’m about to buy an item that costs $XX.XX but really it costs X number of hours of my labor.

    That changes everything for me.

  2. If you have a small business, you can depreciate the solar system over five years and either get a 30% tax credit or a grant = 30% of the system price. Depreciation reduces your tax basis. You can often take 100% depreciation in year 1 by using Section 179 deductions.

  3. Jack,
    This show is definately in your top ten best. More common sense revolution is what we need. It is a revolution that can help us build a better life ! THANKS !

  4. Great show today Jack. I really enjoyed it!

    @womule – I use this ALL the time. It sounds lame, but it really helps me think about what I am buying and if I really need it. I’m sure it’s saved me a ton of money over the years.

  5. Great show as always.

    One nit-picky comment, there are some states where food is taxed. Arkansas is one of them.

  6. I didn’t listen to the show yet, so not sure what aspects you covered. However, bartering DOES NOT alleviate your tax burden–at least not legally. Every state with a sales tax and the Federales on the income tax side, will expect you to self report the fair market value of the bartered transaction.

    Carry on…lol

  7. Awesome show, inspiring and factual, as usual. One issue, however, is that Marauder is right–the IRS does consider barter income taxable. If the two parties do something for each other, each is supposed to declare the market value of what they receive as income. From the IRS website: “Bartering occurs when you exchange goods or services without exchanging money. An example of bartering is a plumber doing repair work for a dentist in exchange for dental services. The fair market value of goods and services received in exchange for goods or services you provide must be included in income in the year received…. Barter exchanges are required to file Form 1099-B for all transactions unless certain exceptions are met.”

    Obviously this income is self-reported. But still, you may not want to be recorded as advocating bartering as a way to keep the transaction untaxable.

  8. I haven’t listened to this show yet but I thought you would get a kick out this. The IRS just returned our tax forms and said we get more money back from them for my wife’s part time business. Since she made under a certain amount of money we get an extra $800 back. I didn’t know the government was in the business of propping up “failing” businesses. What a crock. Either way I’m glad that we get more money back and that they get less of our money.

  9. Hi Jack,

    Would you be able to elaborate on a future show about the “Homestead Tax Expemption” you mentioned? I did a quick search for it and read through Wikipedia but am still unclear on exactly what it does beyond give benefits to a surviving spouse if the breadwinner dies. Also, does this work for a Condo?

    Thank you for everything you do!

  10. I think this sums up well the conspiracy theorist core. http://xkcd.com/258/

  11. For those who are interested in the Inflation Tax (one of my favorite ways to make the grasshoppers begin down the road to Antville..) you can check out the Inflation Calculator at http://www.usinflationcalculator.com/

    This allows you to enter a starting year and a product price in that year and then enter an ending year and the calculator will tell you how much the product now costs. You will notice that the Start Date defaults to 1913… 😉

  12. Awesome show, Jack. My husband and I were just discussing this topic a week or so ago, so it was very timely to hear your inputs.

    I absolutely HATE talking to the people at the Tax Appraisal office, but I built up the courage today after listening to your podcast. As usual, the clerk was a little, shall we say, RUDE to me, but as soon as she realized that I had done my homework and had the information she needed, she came around. I guess they get a lot of nonsense through their offices.. Anyway, it looks like we may meet the requirements for an agricultural appraisal qualification (sometimes called an “AG EXEMPTION)for an Open-Space Appraisal (Section 1-d-1) since we began the establishment of our small-scale pecan orchard 5 years ago. I have an appointment to meet with the Appraisal District tomorrow to present my records and hopefully have our taxes reduced! YEA!!

    You’ve given me a lot of other ideas on how to save money on taxes, plus opened my eyes to several overlooked taxes on everyday activities.