It’s Free…Really?

What’s the first thought that comes to your mind when someone tells you something is free?

Really? Is ANYTHING really free? What’s the catch? Maybe it is free now, but for how long? At some point you’re going to ask me to pay for what you gave me for free, it’s like a law of nature…it’s science. Maybe it’s free for a week, maybe two, a month, 3 months, what about a year? Sooner or later it’s going to happen, it’s a Jedi marketing mind trick for the sole purpose of taking advantage of me at some point. Everyone knows that, right? It’s a consensus, the jury is back — nothing is truly free, right?

Point well made.

It’s true that hardly anything of value is truly free. Most of the time, maybe even 90% of the time, at some point you will be asked to pay for what you initially received for free. But not this time! IT’S FREE. PERIOD!

Whaaaaat?

We’ll say it again, and again, and again. It’s free. Period. It’s free…Always! We will never ask you to pay for what we gave you for free. NEVER!

 

  So what are you offering me for free?

Are you a business owner? Are you a business executive, salesperson, or realtor? Do you have a job that requires a business card? If so, you qualify to place your personal business listing on our site…absolutely FREE.

Why is it free?

It’s free because we thought of you. Good business isn’t just about making money all the time. Yes, we all want to make money, but not at the expense of long-term business relationships. Who do you prefer to have a business relationship with? Someone who puts your needs first and who can relate to you, or someone who just wants your money today?
It’s free because we want your local community to find the most up to date information about the businesses and the people who run them where you live. It’s free because we want EVERYONE who has a business, product, or service to be found in the easiest possible way on Locoolly. It’s free because it benefits you, your community, and those you’d seek to do business with. It benefits Locoolly because every free listing gives users a better experience, which benefits everyone. Win, Win, Win!

Now What?

  1. Go to www.locoolly.com
  2. Do a local search for your business to see if you’re already listed on our site. Search by business name, your name or business category (i.e. Realtors, etc.)
  3. Claim your listing if you find it. (Follow the easy instructions)
  4. Add your listing if you’re not already listed. (Follow the easy instructions)
What have you got to lose? Nothing.

It’s safe. You simply make your business information available to your local community.

It’s Free…Spread the word
Click Here

Natural Disasters and Tax Benefits – Easing the Pain and Suffering

The following briefly discusses the tax implications for those who have been affected by the wildfires in the following California counties: Sonoma, Napa, Mendocino, Lake, Butte, Nevada and Yuba.

On October 10, 2017 the above counties were identified as being in a disaster area. If you have been affected by these wildfires and have not yet addressed this issue with your tax professional, please read on. This information will be helpful in becoming aware of your options and to take action or, at least, consider making an appointment to discuss this issue with your tax professional.

firefighters spray water to wildfire

Many people have suffered great financial losses and emotional stress due to these fires. Those affected need to understand the tax and financial implications of the losses and what is necessary to document those losses in the event the tax authorities call upon them to support the losses claimed. A good number of people do not know that the tax laws allow people so affected to deduct a disaster loss on their income tax return.

The loss, if you have one, can be taken on your 2016 or 2017 income tax return. Generally, the disaster or casualty loss is taken in the year that the loss occurs. However, if you have a loss from a federally declared disaster you have the option to take it sooner. To take the loss on your 2016 return you will need to file an amended tax return for that year. The amount of the loss suffered from a disaster, such as the wildfires, depends on whether the property was personal use (e.g. your residence) or business or income producing property (e.g. rental property). The computation of the loss and the deductible amount is fairly complex.

For personal use property the loss is generally determined based on the decrease in the fair market value of the property immediately before the disaster and the fair market value of the property after the disaster, less any insurance reimbursement received on the property. Even though your home may have been completely destroyed, the land upon which it sat still has value. The fair market value of this land post-disaster needs to be determined. The calculation of loss is the same for the contents (e.g. furniture, appliances, etc.) of the property but is reported separately from the real estate. The loss is reduced by $100 (the $100 rule) per disaster. The deductible amount is the amount of the loss that exceeds 10% of your adjusted gross income (the 10% rule) for the year – 2016 or 2017 depending on the year you elect to take the loss.

Recent property appraisals on your residence or on-line at sites like Zillow can assist you in determining the fair market values before the disaster. The after disaster fair market values (i.e. the land) probably will prove a bit more difficult to determine. The applicable county assessor’s office maybe able to assist you with the post disaster values for land.

For business or income producing property the loss calculation is similar to the personal use property calculation except any depreciation taken on the property must be subtracted in determining the amount of loss that is deductible.

It is recommended that you seek out a competent professional (CPA, EA, Attorney, etc.) to assist you with this issue and to help you in your decision as to which year the loss should be reported.

 

Parents of Veterans May Suffer Their Own “PTS”

This past weekend we celebrated Veterans Day in the “land that I love.” I am not sure why, but my thoughts during this year’s celebration were different than the last. I was more affected by my thoughts about veterans and their families. My thoughts were about the parents of soldiers. I think parents of soldiers in some different way experience their own form of “PTS”, though varied in degree.

In 2001 my son joined the army. He was 20 years old at the time and there was no war. His mother and I had discussed with him what he wanted for his future and after going to college for a brief period he decided that the military was the best option for him to take. He wanted to pursue law enforcement and the military would provide both education and experience simultaneously. He joined and was accepted into the military police and would be sent to Fort Leonard Wood for Basic Training, then stationed at Fort Lewis. As a family we thought he was on his way to a great career. Like all of us in the U.S. at the time, we had no idea what was next.

In September of 2001 I was at a gas station fueling my trucks for the day when I noticed people around me acting a little different. The first tower had been hit. I finished fueling and sent the crew on its way and went home to watch the news to see what was happening. What I saw was tragic, but it did not give rise to thoughts that we had been attacked. No one was sure what had happened. Then, as my wife and I were watching the report we saw the second plane go into the second tower. We were at war! My son had just gotten out of basic training and had moved to Fort Lewis from Fort Leonard Wood two weeks previously. He was no longer in the military to train for a job when he gets out. In fact, his experiences over the next 5 years would remove his desire for a career in law enforcement altogether. That day in September his mom and I had no idea what would come next.

We got our first call. We were happy to hear his words because he was going to stay in the U.S. for his first assignment. He was going to the east coast to help provide security at an important installation on the east coast. What a relief! He did his time there and went back to Fort Lewis.

Then came the second call. “Mom and Dad, I am going to Iraq for a year.” Too soon, he deployed. We were not a military family so we had neither experience nor understanding of military life. We were clueless. Every day for the next 12 months we watched every news report we could. Morning, noon, and night our focus was on Iraq. We watched as reporters talked about injured and killed soldiers. We listened for hints about what was next. We knew what our son’s job was and were generally aware of where he would be or of that which he may be a part. But, most terrifying of all was going to bed a night to go to sleep knowing that when we got up in the morning he may be dead or injured. We turned on the news first thing so we could hear the reports.

It is horrible to feel relief that your child is alive and uninjured and to watch and hear of the soldiers and parents who are not experiencing the same. Our child is alive, theirs is dead. Our child is not wounded, yet theirs is missing arms, legs and so much worse. As parents this created such conflict in us. We were so relieved and yet their lives would never be the same. This went on for 12 months. When he came home we celebrated; when they came home their families cried and mourned. We could be thankful to God, while others were asking God, “Why?” We cannot pretend to relate to or understand what these families are experiencing today. Did their child also go into the military for an education he or she would use after 4 years or service? Now that child is gone due to war.

My son did a second one-year tour in Iraq, so his mother and I lived through it again. While he was safe, he was not the same person he was five years earlier. Time and experience had changed him. We live with those changes every day. But, he is alive and safe without injury.

I admire all the parents who have gone through the same. I will never trivialize the loss any parent is feeling do to the death or injuries that have changed their life forever. It is no small thing. “Thank you for your service,” will never be a slogan I will use without thought. When you see soldiers with their parents, be sure to tell them. For all the soldiers without parents, thank you.

To those who make the decision for us to go to war, be sure to make that decision for our freedom and national safety only. No person should die or be injured for a corporation or government. Only for our freedom and safety should any American experience such suffering and loss. We Americans are willing to give up our life for our freedom, our family, and our friends, so please be mindful and careful that you not ask or require us to sacrifice for any other reason.

My thoughts are with you moms and dads this Veterans Day.