Decision: Prime or not?

Discussion in 'Prime Main Forum (2017-Current)' started by tsT, Jul 20, 2017.

  1. MartyPrime

    MartyPrime Junior Member

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    Okay, I'm knocking on wood right now......okay, just knocked. I have had a few various cars for long stretches of time. Ill use my Corolla as an example. I beat the tar out of that Corolla, drove it for over 200,000 miles and never once had a tire go flat or go bust on me. Knocking on wood again. So I don't miss the spare tire at all. Worst case scenario, there is a run flat kit in there to plug a slow leak or a nail in tire kinda thing. And you get 3 years of complimentary road side assistance with the Prime. And Cargo capacity is still great because it's a hatch. Again, if you had kids, like that one poster, it would definitely be noticeable. Since I don't have kids, anytime my rear cargo area has gotten full, I simply fold down one of the seats and keep packing things in. I think for me, the main reason I went with prime over reg prius, was I personally liked the look of the prime a lot better and figured, what the heck, If I'm going to go with a Prius, I may as well get a carpool lane sticker and free fast traxx while I'm at it. I also don't live in a house, so I was worried If i would find enough stations to charge, and I have more than enough in my area. and 3 spots near me are free. the others, its about 4 bucks to charge. Now I know you can get 60 miles on one gallon of gas, but for me, the quietness and smoothness of the EV is worth the extra buck.
     
  2. wjtracy

    wjtracy Senior Member

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    Getting back to the Prime and the Federal $4500 rebate, I cannot tell if your income is high enough to qualify for the full amount.
    It gets into your income and what deductions you take, etc. What I personally do is make up a fake tax return on TurboTax to estimate final taxes. You can even buy a fake Prime to see the rebate...Turbo Tax requires a valid VIN number, but any VIN'll do so just pick any car you know the PIN.
     
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  3. tsT

    tsT New Member

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    Thanks for the response Marty.

    wjtracy, yes, getting back to that. Honestly, I wouldn't know where to start to figure out where I stand on it. I've had so many major life changes this past year, my numbers from last year are pretty meaningless. All I can say is how much I've made so far in 2017, how much I've had withheld, and that's about it unfortunately.
     
  4. PT Guy

    PT Guy Senior Member

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    tsT, pull out your 2016 tax form 1040. Look at line 56. That is the amount of tax last year that is subject to the credit. If you think 2017 is about the same, OK. You probably won't be able to use the full $4500. Check on California benefits.

    Is there a family member in a higher tax bracket that can buy the car, then sell it to you for the net after their higher tax credit without paying state sales tax? (That works in my state; I don't know about California.)

    Recharging is worth roughly a buck. Don't pay more than that.
     
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  5. tsT

    tsT New Member

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    Last year's numbers won't be anywhere near what this year's numbers will come out to, so looking at 2016 numbers won't shed any light on it.
     
  6. bwilson4web

    bwilson4web BMW i3 and Model 3

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  7. tsT

    tsT New Member

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    Thanks Bob.
     
  8. tsT

    tsT New Member

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    After plugging in some estimations in a calculator I found by Googling "tax liability calculator", it seems to come out to around $3100-3200 for this year, so I assume that is the amount I would be getting back (~$1400 less than the full $4500 credit). But it also looks like I'll be getting back a refund as well, so it's not always all bad!
     
  9. bwilson4web

    bwilson4web BMW i3 and Model 3

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    If you max the tax credit, you'll get all of your Federal withholdings back as a refund.

    Bob Wilson
     
  10. tsT

    tsT New Member

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    Really? Is that a guarantee? I'm probably wrong, but my understanding was that the tax credit it taken from the tax liability up to $4500, but if your liability is <$4500, then your credit will only equal your tax liability. How much has already been withheld is irrelevant.
     
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  11. bwilson4web

    bwilson4web BMW i3 and Model 3

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    Your withholdings are used to primarily pay for your income taxes owed. However, I am not sure about the FICA and medicare tax. Regardless, you might try calling the IRS to get the exact details. Caution as their phone system was designed by civil servants.

    Bob Wilson
     
    #51 bwilson4web, Jul 25, 2017
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2017
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  12. Mark57

    Mark57 2021 Tesla Model 3 LR AWD

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    You are correct. This credit is applied against your total tax liability. It has NOTHING to do with withholding or estimate payments. You have to have enough income to have a minimum of $4,502 in total tax liability in order to use the full credit.

    Prime tax credit
     
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  13. wjtracy

    wjtracy Senior Member

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    I bet you could minimize taxes further by deductions such as IRA. So you need to decide your priorities.
    Historically for students we have suggested leasing for plug-ins because hopefully you can get a good lease rate, whereas the lease company is able to take the $4500 deduction and relfect that in the price.

    EDIT- The other point, however, as a lower income person, you could qualify for enhanced CVRP rebate. So lots of optimization in this area.
     
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  14. tsT

    tsT New Member

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    Thanks for the heads up everyone.

    I'll look into the enhanced CVRP rebate. I assume the state tax credit ($1500 in this case for CA) works the same way as the federal (ie. state tax liability must come to at least $1500 in order to maximize the credit)?
     
  15. MartyPrime

    MartyPrime Junior Member

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    hey tst! No, the CA rebate is completely different. The CA Rebate is an actual Check for the Value of $1,500! If you get the Prime, you fill out the online form, and then once approved, you will get a check in the mail. From start to finish it normally takes about 60 days give or take from online application to check in hand. Took me 62 days to get my check in the mail. The check is made out to you and you can cash it, deposit it, play the slots in vegas with it, use it to pay off your Prime, etc. The Fed deals with tax time, CA rebate is a check in the mail.
     
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  16. tsT

    tsT New Member

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    Thanks Marty!

    Marty McPrime ... you Irish bug!
     
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