It’s 2006 Now .. Do you know what your loan balance is?

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It’s 10:00 am Monday Morning, January 2, 2006 …

TIP: For Individuals with Loan Balances who want to claim interest on their Personal Income Tax Return

FACT: You need to know what your balances are first!

Now’s a good time to access all of your online banking accounts, your credit card accounts, and any of your accounts that a balance .. and print the page .. This will be your December 31, 2005 balance.

Why? Well, for one thing .. yes – you might be receiving monthly bank statements .. but chances are that you are not receiving your monthly loan balances too. Unless you deal with a credit union – they often include your loan transactions on the same account statement – now is the perfect time to go online and get your loan balance.

You need this loan balance at December 31, 2005 to calculate how much loan interest you have paid during 2005, in case you are able to claim interest on your personal income tax return. If you are like me, and do your tax returns at the last possible minute, you might not be able to access the information online at that time. I find that with my banks, you can only go back 3-4 months.

If you are unsure whether or not you can claim any of your loan interest amounts on your tax return, you should discuss this with your accountant or tax preparer.

I also go online and print screen views of all my investment portfolios too … to get the Market Values, confirmation of stocks that I have on hand to be sure I don’t miss any transactions during the year, etc etc. I also print screen the balances of my credit card accounts, if I can, as at December 31, 2005. Not all statements have a cut-off of the end of the month, and I like to accrue everything!

And what do I do with all of these screen prints?

Well … I just put them in a folder, with the rest of my Income Tax information, and when I’m ready to do my income taxes .. I’ll have the information handy.

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