If you don’t own a cat, you might want to get one, and then move with it. That’s only one of the interesting financially-related facts coming to light this tax and finance season. The start of a new year means getting forms together for filing and considering what to do with rebate checks, looking over a year’s worth of investment statements and in some cases reworking a financial plan completely. Considering the flux the American economy is currently seeing, looking for unusual advice may seem like wisdom in a time where everything is up in the air.
Weird tax deductions
That cat you should adopt? It can be a lifesaver on a tax return in a bunch of ways. As TurboTax pointed out, there are a number of animal-related deductions people miss on annual returns that anyone is eligible for.
First, if you moved in the last year and owned a pet at the time, you know you can deduct all of your moving expenses. Keeping an itemized list or reviewing online banking records to see how much went toward buying packing materials, obtaining a moving service and paying for transit to look at locations are all things that should go on a return.
But pet owners often overlook the fact that animal-related expenses can be added on to this total, too. Kennels and boarding, as well as vet visits for picky apartment complexes, vaccinations to bring them up to code and purchasing pet carriers or other items all can be added onto the bottom line.
What’s more, if your new home is also your office, and you happen to have an attack cat, that’s another tax deduction. Business owners that retain a guard animal can deduct its care and upkeep at the end of each year as a regular operating expense. You can’t, however, count the front and back yards as your body guard’s office space, though, so don’t try to cheat on home office square footage.
Smart investing options
Still remember that cat you should have adopted before you moved? Here’s some additional impetus to visit the local ASPCA on the way home from work. The Guardian recently held a research study where it granted participants a theoretical $5,000 and asked them to invest money in the best way they saw fit. The person whose investment plan garnered the most income from these strategies would be declared the winner. Participants included a variety of professional investors, stock brokers and money managers, as well as elementary students as a control for investment knowledge.
The winner turned out to be a cat.
“While the professionals used their decades of investment knowledge and traditional stock-picking methods, the cat selected stocks by throwing his favorite toy mouse on a grid of numbers allocated to different companies,” The Guardian wrote regarding the results.
The finicky feline investor made about $600 more than the professional portfolios. Those plans still showed strong positive growth during the course of the experiment, the source stated, showing that taking an investment tip from a cat wouldn’t be a bad idea, but it may be wise to stick to the reliability of a financial planner.
When structuring ideas regarding tax rebate checks, people should be aware of previous trends shown by their intended stocks, mutual funds and bonds. They should also realize that, like throwing a mouse toy on a number grid, the chance at success or failure isn’talways certain, but at least you’ll have a cat to help you make the big decisions and qualify for better tax deductions.