Last week I wrote about three educational and energy credits that reduce your taxes. I mentioned one deduction, too. So what’s the difference between a tax credit and a tax deduction?
A tax credit directly reduces the taxes you owe. So if you do your taxes and owe Uncle Sam $5,000, a $2,500 tax credit means you pay just $2,500 in taxes.
A tax deduction reduces your taxable income, which is what determines how much tax you pay. So if your gross income was $45,000, a $2,000 tax deduction means you pay taxes on $43,000.
In short, a tax credit saves you a lot more money than a tax deduction, so never skip a chance to claim a valid tax credit. Got questions? Leave a comment and I’ll do my best to answer.