Category: Finance

Three Ways to Save Money on Home Remodels


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Home Remodels

For more than 32 years, David Leoce fulfilled positions as a revenue and special agent at the Internal Revenue Service, where he carried out auditing investigations that led to successful prosecutions. In his leisure time, David Leoce likes to work with his hands and enjoys woodworking projects and room remodeling.

Remodels and renovations range widely in scope and complexity, and without a detailed plan, they can quickly become more expensive than anticipated. Homeowners can achieve their property goals and avoid unwanted costs by applying the following strategies.

1. Aim for functionality.

Recent home trends have involved opening up big rooms and creating as much space as possible, which is a costly endeavor. Instead of size, focus on function so that the house not only looks improved but also serves more purposes.

2. Proceed in stages.

Sometimes the necessary approach is a large renovation. In these instances, homeowners can maximize their budget by proceeding in stages, rather than attempting to complete the project all at once. Purchasing certain materials in bulk up front, like floor tile, can help save money throughout each stage, as well.

3. Use existing plumbing

One of the most difficult and expensive things to do in a remodel is modify or move plumbing, whether for a kitchen sink or the bathroom facilities. Wherever possible, plan remodels around existing plumbing.


Improvements to the IRS’s Online Portal

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For more than 30 years, David Leoce served as a member of the U.S. Treasury Department. David Leoce retired from the position of supervising special agent in the criminal division of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

In a June 2017 press release, the IRS announced a number of new features to taxpayers’ online accounts.

To better serve taxpayers, the IRS has added several features to the online portal it launched in December 2016. With the new changes, taxpayers can now view 18 months’ worth of tax payment history, as well as their payoff amounts and tax balance for each year. Taxpayers can also use the Get Transcript function to retrieve online transcripts of several Form 1040-series. Finally, the system allows taxpayers to provide feedback regarding their online account and give recommendations for improvement.

To protect taxpayers’ confidential information, the IRS requires that they complete a two-step authentication process. Users must enter their name and password as well as a security code the IRS sends to their cellular phones.