Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Money in the bank

In an effort to begin the transition from wedding blogging (which will always be a big part of this site!) and sharing some of our newlywed life--today is a newlywed post.

The other day I asked my hubby to deposit his meager internship check at the bank ASAP, since we live paycheck-to-paycheck [that's what one non-profit income and graduate school in Southern California does to ya].

When he came back and dumped the receipt on my desk I gasped in amazement. Our account balance had tripled! Overnight!

After coming to my senses at our good fortune I suddenly realized that the week of late nights with statements and W4s and 1040s in February had come full circle and we'd gotten our tax refund. But I couldn't make up the difference in my head....the refund was still almost double what I had anticipated.
A little bit of research led me to the discovery that we qualified for the Making Work Pay tax credit, which essentially refunded us $400 each in fica taxes.
If you're really interested, here's how the IRS explains Schedule M.
If you are vaguely interested and don't understand the IRS, here's an MSN money simpler explanation.

Alls I know is we got a bigger tax return that I planned on, and we aren't complaining!
I'm currently working on a spreadsheet to divvy up the cash responsibly.
I'll share our final decision on how we plan to spend the money using percentages.

I have to say, I actually enjoyed filing my taxes [mostly*] on my own this year. It was interesting to gather all the information and see how and where our money went and how the system works--although I can totally understand that for people with more money/more complicated situations, taxes can be a stressful time. But for us broke newlyweds, it was really pretty simple!

*I said mostly because I still consulted my dad by phone on a couple of confusing section on my taxes. He has done them for me since I've been working, and is a CPA!

Were you pleasantly surprised with your tax return this year? Do you dread tax season and suffer through it, or hire it out to avoid the pain?


Anonymous said...

We were pleasantly surprised that the "marriage penalty" didn't effect us as badly as we had anticipated. I think owning a house saved us, and yes the extra $800 is nice! We're putting it into our vacation fund for our 1 year anniversary trip...

writtenbliss said...

How did I miss your new blog design!? It looks gorgeous!

Katie said...

@writtenbliss: isn't is gorg! Thanks to Joy (Ms. Poodle)
I unveiled it about 3 weeks ago!

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