Instant Raise: Get An Instant Raise... Even If Your Boss Hates You
By Christopher Wright
More money and more money. I need it, you need it, everyone seems to need more of it. The question becomes, how do I obtain more money? Sometimes the hardest questions often have the simplest answers. Its just that sometimes we tend to over analyze situations. The best place to start may be your existing job. What?! I know it sounds crazy, especially when it seems that your supervisor has the intelligence of a zombie from 'Night of the Living Dead.' What if I showed you a simple way to bypass your boss and get an instant raise, would you be interested?
Instant raise anyone? The solution lies with a secret form within your personnel or human resources department. You also need to take a different frame of mind when it comes to finances in your life. OK, maybe this secret form isn't that secret. Actually, its just the W4 form you filled out when you were hired. But as mysterious as it is combined with the fact so few really fully utilize its potential, it may as well be a top secret CIA document. I'll come back to fully using the W4 momentarily, first I think you need to understand why you must take a different view of your finances.
Prepared to be shocked! Uncle Sam may not always have your best interests at heart. Did you know that the refund you get after filing your taxes may not be entirely a refund? Items like Earned Income Credit (EIC) are actual refunds, but what about the part from the Federal? Well, that's just money you loaned Uncle Sam and told him to hold for you. In other words, you over paid your Federal taxes and now you're just getting those funds back (if you fie your taxes correctly). This is where the W4 form comes into play.
Very simply, the W4 determines how much taxes you'll have cut from your check. The more exemptions you claim, the less taxes taken out of your check. To get the full benefit of this form, you should claim 9 exemptions. Anything more, and your employer will have to get permission from the IRS. Remember, its nobody's business why you're changing your W4. Claiming 9 exemptions should give you approximately 90%-95% of your check. Lets run the numbers.
This is an oversimplified example:
Say you earn 65k per year and you're in the 35% tax bracket. That means you pay $22,750 in taxes. Changing your W4 should allow you to have over $20k back in your pocket during the year.
Now for the reality check. If you increase your exemptions, you must have the deductions to match, or you may end up owing taxes back to the IRS. This shouldn't present a problem if your intentions is to enter the entrepreneur/small business arena. You automatically gain access to deductions you wouldn't have otherwise. Have a home office, then some of your house expenses become deductible. Your phone, your car, and dozens of other items now become deductible. As I said before, some of the toughest questions have the simplest answers.
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