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1. Watch out for the gift tax

For 2023, the Internal Revenue Service has set the annual gift tax exclusion limit to $17,000. This means if you give someone a gift valued at over $17,000, you’ll have to file a gift tax return with the IRS.

However, that doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll face a hefty tax for a one-time gift. The excess of your contribution is subtracted from your lifetime gift tax exclusion — which is currently $12.92 million. Once your lifetime exclusion is depleted, you may start owing gift taxes, which can range between 18% to 40%.

Kiss Your Credit Card Debt Goodbye

Millions of Americans are struggling to crawl out of debt in the face of record-high interest rates. A personal loan offers lower interest rates and fixed payments, making it a smart choice to consolidate high-interest credit card debt. It helps save money, simplifies payments, and accelerates debt payoff. Credible is a free online service that shows you the best lending options to pay off your credit card debt fast — and save a ton in interest.

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2. Cosigning comes with caveats

Even if you’re just cosigning a loan to help out a friend or family member with limited credit, it’s important to be cautious.

You could be held liable for any missed or late payments, which can hurt your credit score, or even get you sued or have your wages garnished if the account goes into default.

3. Lending money is risky

If you’re lending a loved one funds with the expectation you’re going to be paid back at a later date, there can be several pitfalls to look out for.

Aside from making sure you don’t loan out more than you can afford, you’ll need to decide on a repayment schedule and whether they’re going to owe you interest as well. Experts advise you to put all of this in writing.

And you’re not always guaranteed to get your money back — which could potentially harm both your relationship and your finances.

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Serah Louis is a reporter with Moneywise.com. She enjoys tackling topical personal finance issues for young people and women and covering the latest in financial news.

Disclaimer

The content provided on Moneywise is information to help users become financially literate. It is neither tax nor legal advice, is not intended to be relied upon as a forecast, research or investment advice, and is not a recommendation, offer or solicitation to buy or sell any securities or to adopt any investment strategy. Tax, investment and all other decisions should be made, as appropriate, only with guidance from a qualified professional. We make no representation or warranty of any kind, either express or implied, with respect to the data provided, the timeliness thereof, the results to be obtained by the use thereof or any other matter.