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Old 11-05-2007, 04:01 AM
 
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"I guess that a 'reliable' car is needed. I am not sure though of where in the US that you would desire an 'unreliable' car."

True. I think of a reliable car as being much more new than the kind of car you are driving into the ground. If you're a two-car household, maybe one is much older than the other. I tend to buy an entry-level Japanese car, maintain it religiously, and drive it until it's junk. My Mazda 323 went 170,000 mile, 11 years. Didn't break down on the road, but needed too much to keep it going further. My current Toyota Matrix has 49,000 miles, five years. I don't have the concept of trading cars in for new ones- I sell them for parts or donations.

I just think you'd want a fairly newish car for long roads with few people. I work off-shifts, and did so when I lived in Maine (before cell phones- in the Dark Ages) and driving down those long cold dark roads, I wanted to know that my car was safe. (Also, that was the days where I didn't have a lot of money).
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Old 11-05-2007, 10:29 AM
 
Location: Blue Ridge Mtns of NC
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Lowest State and Local Tax Burdens Compared to Other U.S. States

1. AK
2. NH
3. TN
4. DE
5. AL

The Tax Foundation - State and Local Tax Burdens Compared to Other U.S. States, 1970-2007
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Old 11-05-2007, 11:30 AM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
21,320 posts, read 26,148,901 times
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'Tax Burden' is an interesting way of re-indexing the numbers, in order of average household income. So that an area with a lower average household income 'appears' to be paying more taxes.

However as a retiree, you must begin to look at these areas differently. Where will your fixed-income perform the best?

In a depressed economy.

When a county's average household income is minimum wage, then your pension income of minimum-wage plus will 'appear' much better.

The state where we choose to move to for retirement appears awful in the 'tax burden' scale. However we pay no income taxes, and our property taxes are very low. We have never seen such low vehicle registration fees, and the hunting and fishing licenses are not high either.
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Old 11-05-2007, 01:16 PM
 
Location: DC Area, for now
3,517 posts, read 8,263,497 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by janb View Post
just something I whipped up, with calculations for the following: Its a Bit subjective, as you need to enter data based upon what you find applicable to locations (Housing and utility costs, tax rates, equity growth rates, whether groceries are taxed, commute needs (medical / job)...).
I see. I've done something similar. Finding the info to plug in gets to be hard. The tax thing is tricky. Since nothing is very accurate for where I live now, I figure they aren't accurate for my prospective places either. I used the city-data but it is pretty old so I'm not sure what more current numbers would be.
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Old 11-05-2007, 05:59 PM
 
Location: We_tside PNW / CO / SA TX / Thailand
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a lot of data here by state, not sure how current, but it does really help to get the particulars on state exemptions...how they tax retirement

Taxes by State

I usually call the county assessor up as I narrow my choices, as my local burden is currently much more significant than state or federal.

Basing the info on average income is really irrelevant at this stage of life. I do make it a point to keep my LLC's for capital investments and probably my residency status in an income tax free state. (tho future income looks to be pretty bleak, as I "cash-in" on our few remaining opportunities for low long-term capital gains rates). But if it is WA, I will have to rent an apartment in one of my commercial buildings rather than own personal property as a home. I will likely just have a farm in a low property tax state to call home during 'gardening season' (which won't be over 5 months of the year). It would be most handy if these places were just across the state line form each other.

(Maybe NH and ME ) but a short gardening season there! How's the summer evening humidity / temp along border of NH & ME? and what is the current cost of concrete, delivered? (my next passive solar home will be made with ICF's) Either Rastra or Apex - APEX Block™ by Apex Construction Systems, Inc. (http://www.apexconsys.com/index.cfm - broken link)
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Old 11-05-2007, 06:18 PM
 
Location: DC Area, for now
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Yeah, that's one of the sites that makes MD look fairly low tax because they miss the county piggyback income tax - an additional 2.5-3% in most of the counties. So, I don't trust what they say about other places. They don't give a clue about the property tax thing in WA you have been talking about.

In the end, I suppose there are tradeoffs everywhere. Really low tax places probably have public services that are seriously lacking. My estimates on OR & WA showed it would be less taxing than where I am now, but I was assuming a similar property tax load.
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Old 11-05-2007, 06:27 PM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
21,320 posts, read 26,148,901 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by janb View Post
a lot of data here by state, not sure how current, but it does really help to get the particulars on state exemptions...how they tax retirement

Taxes by State

I usually call the county assessor up as I narrow my choices, as my local burden is currently much more significant than state or federal.

Basing the info on average income is really irrelevant at this stage of life. I do make it a point to keep my LLC's for capital investments and probably my residency status in an income tax free state. (tho future income looks to be pretty bleak, as I "cash-in" on our few remaining opportunities for low long-term capital gains rates). But if it is WA, I will have to rent an apartment in one of my commercial buildings rather than own personal property as a home. I will likely just have a farm in a low property tax state to call home during 'gardening season' (which won't be over 5 months of the year). It would be most handy if these places were just across the state line form each other.
Our mil rate is 0.00842

Which is why our property taxes can easily be $1.05 per acre.



Some counties in Maine the mil rate goes down as low as 0.00463 [like Knox county]
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Old 11-06-2007, 01:33 AM
 
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New Hampshire has no income tax and no taxes on liquor or cigarettes. However, it has pretty heavy real estate taxes and limited services of many kinds.
I think these "tax haven" lists are misleading. I'd rather see a specific kind of tax comparison for different places. For instance, I buy very little stuff. I don't care about sales tax. How about taxes on pensions or social security or military pensions? All vary. If you're renting, you might not care about real estate taxes. Etc.
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Old 11-06-2007, 05:14 AM
 
Location: Blue Ridge Mtns of NC
5,658 posts, read 17,385,310 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brightdoglover View Post
How about taxes on pensions or social security or military pensions?
States with No Personal Income Taxes:

Alaska
Florida(1)
Nevada
New Hampshire(2)
South Dakota
Tennessee(3)
Texas
Washington
Wyoming

States Exempting Total Amount of Federal Annuities:

Alabama
Hawaii
Illinois
Kansas
Kentucky(4)
Louisiana
Massachusetts(5)
Michigan
Mississippi
New York
North Carolina(6)
Oregon(7)
Pennsylvania
Tennessee
Wisconsin(18)

Footnotes

(1) FL: Value of stocks, bonds, mutual funds, etc. taxed. See details below.

(2) NH: 5% tax on interest/dividend income that exceeds $2,400 (single) or $4,800 (couple). $1,200 exemption for residents 65+, blind, or disabled prior to their 65th birthday.

(3) TN: Certain interest/dividend income taxed at 6% if it exceeds $1,250 (single) or $2,500 (couple).

(4) KY: Total amount is exempt only if retired before January 1, 1998. See below for retirements after December 31, 1997.

(5) MA: Tax rate on ordinary income including interest and dividend is 5.3% for the 2002 tax year.

(6) NC: Annuities not taxed beginning with 1998 if individual had five years of government service as of August 12, 1989.

(7) OR: Annuities of those who retired before October 1, 1991 are not taxed. Those who retired after October 1, 1991 are taxed only on that portion of the annuity attributable to government service after October 1, 1991.

(8) WI: Full exemption if benefits received from a retirement account established before 1964

Other Exemptions
Note: SS=Social Security; RR=Railroad Retirement; AGI=Adjusted Gross Income; HH=Head of Household; MFJ=Married Filing Jointly; MFS=Married Filing Separately; QW=Qualified Widow

Arizona: $2,500 exclusion for federal & AZ state and local pensions. All residents receive a $2,100 personal exemption. In addition, all residents 65+ receive a $2,100 exemption.

Arkansas: In addition to the $6,000 exemption provided for distributions received from employment related pension plans, the cost recovery adjustment calculated pursuant to IRC § 72, using the simplified worksheet found in your federal return, is applicable to Arkansas returns filed for 2003 and subsequent years. The total exemption allowable for employer-sponsored pension plans and/or IRA’s is $6,000 per taxpayer. All residents 65+ receive an additional $22 exemption. Note: If your original cost of contribution was fully recovered as part of the McFadden v. Weiss lawsuit, you are not eligible to claim IRC 72 recovery.

California: Personal and age 65+ exemption of $91 each.

Colorado: $20,000 exemption for all taxpayers 55-64. $24,000 exemption for all taxpayers 65+. Colorado follows Federal rules, exempts U.S. Government interest, and taxes municipal interest earned from states other than Colorado.

Connecticut: Personal exemptions of up to $12,000 (MFS), $12,625 (single), $19,000 (HH), and $24,000 (MFJ). Tax credits up to 75% depending on income level. SS benefits are tax-exempt if federal AGI is less than $50,000 (single or MFS) or less than $60,000 (MFJ or HH). The amount of taxable benefits is reduced for those with AGI above those levels.

Delaware: $2,000 pension exclusion ($12,500 for those 60+). Add’l personal credit of $110 for those 60+. In addition, all residents 60+ or totally disabled get a $2,000 exemption if earned income is less than $2,500 and AGI is under $10,000. (Figures double if married.) Delaware exempts SS and RR pension income.

District of Columbia: Two provisions: (1) $3,000 pension exclusion if 62+; and (2) an additional exemption of $1,370 for all residents 65+ (not just pension recipients). SS is excluded from taxable income as well as the first $3,000 of federal and DC pensions.

Florida: The exemption for individual and joint filers for Florida Intangible Tax is respectively, $250,000 and $500,000. Every natural person is now entitled each year to an exemption of the first $250,000 of the value of property otherwise subject to the annual tax. In addition, a husband and wife filing their Intangible Tax return jointly, shall have an exemption of $500,000. For 2006, intangible assets are taxed at $0.50 per thousand dollars of taxable value. Florida does not tax unearned income such as interest, dividends, etc. (For tax year 2007, Florida’s Annual Intangible Personal Property Tax has been repealed, effective January 1, 2007.)

Georgia: $25,000 retirement income exclusion if 62+ or totally disabled. Effective January 2007, exemption goes to $30,000. SS benefits exempt from state tax.

Hawaii: SS benefits and First Tier Railroad Retirement Act benefits are not taxable. Residents are allowed a personal exemption of $1,040 per person plus an additional $1,040 per person for those 65+. This applies only to the taxpayer or the taxpayer’s spouse.

Idaho: Exclusions (minus SS received) for those 65+ or 62+ and disabled: $24,636 (single); $36,954 (married couple). Exclusion changes for military pension each year.

Indiana: $2,000 pension exclusion if 62+ (minus SS and RR). No pension exclusion allowed for survivor annuitants of civil service annuities. In addition, all residents 65+ receive a $1,000 personal exemption or $1,500 if federal AGI is less than $40,000. Premiums paid for Indiana’s Long-Term Care Insurance Program are eligible for deduction.

Iowa: $6,000 (single), $12,000 (joint) for disabled and those 55+. There is also a $20 personal exemption credit for 65+.

Kentucky: With retirements after January 1, 1998, some of the civil service annuity will be taxed. The percentage will be based on number of years of government service before 1/1/98 and total years worked. All residents receive an exclusion of up to $41,110 of taxable pension benefits.

Louisiana: SS is non-taxable.

Maine: Eligible pension deduction of $6,000 (must complete Worksheet for Pension Income Deduction). Additional Standard Deduction for Age and/or Blindness: Unmarried (single or HH): the additional amount is $1,250 if the individual is 65 or over OR blind. $2,500 if the individual is both 65 or over AND blind. Married (whether MFS or MFJ) or a QW: the additional standard deduction is $1,000 if one spouse is age 65 or over OR blind; $2,000 if one spouse is 65 or over AND blind; $2,000 if both spouses are 65 or over OR blind; $4,000 is both spouses are 65 or over AND blind.

Maryland: Pension exclusion up to $22,600 for those 65+ or totally disabled, reduced by SS or RR benefits. In addition, all residents 65+ receive a personal exemption of $1,000. Beginning in tax year 2006, exclusion of the first $5,000 of military retirement income received during the taxable year by an individual of any age, or surviving spouse.

Massachusetts: An exemption of $700 is available for individuals who have reached the age of 65 by 01/01/06. This exemption is in addition to the personal exemption of $3,575 (single or MFS), $5,525 (HH) and $7,150 (MFJ). SS and VA disability are non-taxable.

Michigan: Public pension income from all sources (city, county, state or federal) is exempt from the Michigan income tax as are SS benefits. Private retirement income included in AGI is deductible up to $40,920 (single) and $81,840 (joint). The allowable private pension deduction amount is reduced by the amount of exempt public pension income. Retirement income does not include payments made before the individual was eligible to retire under the provisions of the plan. Seniors (65+) are allowed an additional exemption of $2,100 for tax year 2006. A deduction for taxpayers ages 65 and over is allowed for dividends, interest, and capital gains included in AGI up to $9,128 (single) and $18,255 (joint). The allowable deduction is reduced by all pension deductions from AGI, public and private.

Minnesota: Single 65+ or disabled have some income excluded if federal AGI is under $33,700 and non-taxable SS is under $9,600. For a couple, the limits are $42,000 AGI and $12,000 non-taxable SS.

Mississippi: $12,000 exemption for MFJ; $6,000 MFS. All residents 65+ receive an additional $1,500 exemption.

Missouri: Up to $6,000 exemption for each filer falling below the AGI limitation of $25,000 (single), $16,000 (MFS), and $32,000 (MFJ); The $6,000 must be decreased dollar for dollar by the amount the income exceeds the income limitation. For example, a single filer would be completely phased out at $31,000 (individual), a married couple filing separate at $22,000. For a married couple filing jointly, if both had pensions of $6,000 or greater, the exemption phases out completely at $44,000. If only one had a $6,000 pension, the phase out is $38,000.

Montana: $3,600 pension exclusion for those with AGI below $30,000, reduced $2 for every $1 over $30,000. All residents 65+ receive an additional personal exemption of $1,900; indexed annually for inflation. Tier I and II RR benefits are fully exempt.

Nebraska: Tier I and II RR benefits are fully exempt.

New Jersey: Exclusion is $15,000 (single), $10,000 (MFS), or $20,000 (MFJ), for annuitants 62+ or disabled according to SS guidelines. Pension and other retirement income exclusions are eliminated for taxpayers with NJ gross income over $100,000. An additional $3,000 ($6,000 joint) can be deducted if ineligible for SS and RR. All residents 65+ receive a $1,000 personal exemption. Under NJ’s 3-Year Rule, annuities are not taxed until total employee contributions to civil service retirement have been recovered.

New Mexico: Exemptions for all residents 65+ or blind: $8,000 for those with AGI less than $18,000; exemption reduces as income increases - no exemptions above $51,000 (MFJ); $25,500 (MFS); $28,500 (single).

New York: In addition to the exemption for pensions of NY State, local governments and the federal government, there is an additional pension and annuity income exclusion of up to $20,000 available to persons 59 ½ or more. Also, SS benefits are exempt from NY state and local tax.

North Carolina: Exclusion of up to $4,000 retirement income from a government source, if you did not have 5 years of creditable service as of 8/12/89; 65+ receive an addition of $750 (single) or $1,200 ($600 each for a couple if both 65+) to the regular standard deduction.

North Dakota: Pension exclusion up to $5,000, reduced by any SS benefits, is available only on the state’s ND-2 individual tax form. No exclusion is offered on the ND-1 individual tax form.

Ohio: Graduated retirement income credit ranging from $0, for annuities less than $500, to $200 for annuities exceeding $8,000. $50 tax credit per return for residents 65+.

Oklahoma: Federal civil service and OK government retiree exclusion of $10,000. Military retiree exclusion is 50 percent of benefits or $10,000, whichever is greater. $10,000 other pensions exclusion with modified AGI limit $37,500 (single) or $75,000 (joint). Additional $1,000 exemption for legally blind or 65+ under certain income limits. Oklahoma tax treatment of federal annuities will be liberalized as of 2007.

Oregon: Additional standard deduction for 65+: $1,200 (single, HH), $1,000 each spouse 65+ (MFJ, MFS, and QW). Credit for long-term care insurance premiums.

South Carolina: $3,000 retirement deduction at any age, $10,000 for 65+. $15,000 deduction for each taxpayer 65+ by end of tax year against any SC taxable income (reduced by $10,000 retirement deduction above). SS and RR benefits are not taxed

South Dakota: No tax on unearned income such as interest, dividends, etc.

Tennessee: Persons 65+ are tax-exempt, if total annual income, from any and all sources, is $16,200 or less (single), or $27,000 or less (joint - no matter which spouse is 65+). “Hall income tax” does not apply to income from any type of annuity.

Utah: $7,500 retirement income exemption per retiree if 65+, $4,800 if under 65. Reduced $0.50 for every $1 of federal AGI, plus any lump sum distribution reported on federal form 4972, plus any interest on line 8b of the federal forms 1040A or 1040 that exceed $25,000 - single, $16,000 - MFS, $32,000 – MFJ, HH, or QW.

Virginia: Individuals who were already age 65 on January 1, 2004, will continue to claim an age deduction of $12,000. Individuals who reach age 65 after January 1, 2004, will be eligible for a deduction of $12,000 subject to income limitations based on the individual’s adjusted federal AGI. The deduction will be reduced by $1 for each $1 that the adjusted federal AGI exceeds $50,000 for single filers, or $75,000 combined total for married individuals filing joint or separate returns. You can calculate VA state age deduction at Virginia Department of Taxation. Additional $800 personal exemption if 65+. Virginia exempts SS and Tier I RR benefits from taxation.

West Virginia: $2,000 pension exclusion. Residents 65+ may exclude a total of $8,000, including the $2,000 pension exclusion.

Wisconsin: In addition to the exemption for benefits from an account established before 1964, for taxable years beginning in 2002 and after, all retirement payments received from the U.S. government that relate to the Coast Guard, the commissioned corps of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, or the commissioned corps of the Public Health Service are exempt from Wisconsin income tax. An additional personal exemption of $250, if 65+.
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Old 11-06-2007, 06:57 AM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
21,320 posts, read 26,148,901 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brightdoglover View Post
...
I think these "tax haven" lists are misleading. I'd rather see a specific kind of tax comparison for different places. For instance, I buy very little stuff. I don't care about sales tax. How about taxes on pensions or social security or military pensions? All vary. If you're renting, you might not care about real estate taxes. Etc.
I agree.

Each state does it so differently that it does become difficult.

Here with their exemptions and their deductions you have to earn far more than my pension before you get a high enough income to be eligible to pay income taxes.

And we are fortunate that they look very favourably on our investment income as well.



But each person, has to do the math, for each state, before you can really see which state would do better for you.
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