Tricks to get hundreds of dollars back on your taxes

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PHOENIX - One trillion dollars! That’s how much money people miss out on every year in deductions on their taxes.

More than a third of us will scramble to finish our taxes in the final two weeks before the deadline. Without help from an expert you might miss out on a lot of cash.

Scott Rulon, with Rulon Financial and Tax, has seen it before.

"I think there are a lot of people that do miss tax deductions," he said.

According to Rulon, most people miss out on a chance to make money off state tax credits.

The “working poor tax credit” allows you to donate up to $400 to an Arizona charity and get a dollar for dollar tax credit from the state.

Then when you deduct that same donation off your federal taxes you will get almost 25 cents on the dollar back. That means a $400 donation will earn you $500 in tax breaks. You can find a list of those charities here: http://www.azdor.gov/TaxCredits.aspx.

"That’s a great sale price just for giving monies to a worthy cause," Rulon said.

You can also get a state tax credit for up to $1,000 from private school tuition. If your kid goes to a public school you can take advantage of a $400 tax credit for extracurricular activities.

“The public schools really rely on this money because as state education budgets get cut, there has got to be a way to pay for those programs," Rulon said.

Rulon said the best way to save some dough come tax time is to keep a log of the miles you drive in your car. You can get 50 cents for every mile if you are driving around for work. You can even get a tax break for the miles you log while driving around looking for work.

"Another big one, if you are out there looking for a job, and I know there are a lot of people out there looking for a job the mileage that you are driving in your car while looking for a job is deductible for you," he said. "The cost of making resumes while looking for a job is deductible as well."

If you missed out on any of these tax breaks this time don’t worry, you can take advantage next year too.

Remember, before you make that midnight rush to the post office, you have until April 18 to file this year.