Save a lot at the end of the year? This works out! When you meet important deadlines and dates. FOCUS online gives five examples that you can use to save a lot of money. From credit to dentist.

For employees, December is usually a very good month economically. Many companies then pay out the annual bonus or Christmas bonus. But even if you don’t get a special payment, the last month of the year is worth it to save a lot of money.

Real estate owners who are paying off a loan can use money for special repayment until the end of the year. There is a special savings potential because the interest on loans is currently generally higher than interest on savings.

Get rid of your outstanding debts faster and save yourself the high interest on loans. They can often repay up to five, sometimes even up to ten percent of the original loan amount per year through a special repayment. You can usually find the rule in your contract under the item “Special repayment”.

Anyone who has not yet been to the dentist in 2022 should go there as soon as possible for a check-up so that there are no gaps in the bonus booklet.

FOCUS online says: For every preventive appointment at the dentist within a year, adults get a stamp in the bonus booklet. If you have had a check-up appointment for at least five years in a row, the health insurance company will give you a higher subsidy for denture treatment.

Health insurance then covers 70 instead of 60 percent of the average costs of standard care. If you maintain the bonus booklet for ten years, the figure is even 75 percent.

Not only the dentist can be worthwhile, but also the specialist medical practices.

From 2023, the new patient bonus for medical practices will no longer apply. As a result, it may take longer before you can get an appointment. If you have not seen a specialist again within the past 48 months, you are considered a new patient.

After the end of the home office obligation, it can be worthwhile for drivers to take a look at the odometer. If the car has often remained unused in the past few months because there were no commutes, the annual mileage may be reduced.

Anyone who reports this to their car insurance company can expect a proportionate premium refund or a credit note from the company concerned, depending on the tariff they have taken out.

In times of crisis and at the festival of love, the willingness to donate is usually particularly high. Anyone who considers church, charitable or non-profit organizations can also benefit from this themselves. Because donations of up to 20 percent of your total income can be deducted as special expenses in your tax return. If the donations exceed the maximum amount, they can be carried forward to the next few years and then counted there, the BVL reports.

For donations of up to 300 euros, a bank statement or a deposit slip is sufficient as proof for the tax office. For higher amounts, a proper donation receipt is usually required.

Early booking offers have many advantages: vacationers save money and often get the hotel they want, they often also benefit from fixed prices for children. Tour operators have different deadlines for their early booking discounts. It is best for holidaymakers to compare several providers.

There are also disadvantages: If you commit yourself to a long-term plan, you can no longer reschedule at short notice for personal reasons without cancellation fees. If you ignore such early booking discounts and still want to travel very cheaply, you can wait for the last-minute offers.

Then the selection of hotels is not that big anymore. This is also an expensive affair for families with children.

Would you like to quickly install a fireplace or have the heating repaired? Sure, you have to get a craftsman first. If that works, you can claim 20 percent of the billed craftsman services in the tax return – but a maximum of 1200 euros. The prerequisite is that you have the work carried out in the apartment you use yourself, which also includes second homes and holiday apartments. Also, you have to pay the bill by bank transfer.

According to the BVL, if the invoice for the work exceeds the amount of 6000 euros, it can be worth agreeing on two partial payments with the company carrying out the work.

One up to a maximum of 6,000 euros this year, the second only at the beginning of next year in order to get more tax savings.

Cancel insurance, memberships, the gym or newspaper subscriptions now. In many cases, you have several notice periods that are spread over the entire year. Although September 30 is the deadline in many cases, it is worth taking a closer look at the notice periods. Not all contracts have a “three months before the end of the year” deadline.

Even if the contracts are still running, use the end of the year to cash in and cancel the corresponding contracts now. Check whether you really use the service and calculate the expenses over the year. Then you can quickly see whether termination is worthwhile or whether you can continue the contract.

Consumers should take a look at their electricity and gas contract. According to the current court order, the energy suppliers remain bound by their price guarantees. Adjustments are ineffective.

Many municipal utilities and energy suppliers want to raise electricity and gas prices from January 1, 2023. In the case of electricity tariffs, the energy price is sometimes doubled. This tears gigantic financial holes in the household budget.

Consumers should primarily look out for cheap providers. Basic suppliers are often cheaper than supposed discount electricity providers.

FOCUS online advises: Households can either hire a company to look for a new provider or compare tariffs themselves, for example with the help of online tariff calculators.

The annual electricity or gas consumption, which is on the end-of-year bill, is important for this. The Federal Network Agency advises that those who want to switch should not only compare the price of different providers for gas delivery to their own place of residence.

Notice periods and contract terms also differ. The shorter the contract, the more flexible customers are and the tariff may be more expensive.

Losses on investments can be worthwhile – at least from a tax point of view. Investors who maintain their accounts with different financial institutions can have losses incurred certified by the financial institution.

With the help of the loss certificate, it is possible to offset capital losses against positive investment income that you have achieved at another financial institution as part of the income tax return. The BVL explains that this also applies to married couples who hold investments with several banks and invest them together.

At the request of the taxpayer, the bank where the losses occurred will issue a loss certificate. In order to receive a certificate for 2022, the investor must apply for this by December 15 of the current calendar year.

Married people should check whether their income tax brackets still fit. The taxpayers’ association advises that this can be particularly useful at the end of the year. If the income ratio between the partners changes in the coming year, for example due to a job change or a salary increase, switching to a different tax class combination can be worthwhile.

Married couples have the choice between the tax class combination 4/4, 3/5 and the factor method. The combination 4/4 is often chosen when the partners have approximately the same income, the combination 3/5 when the income distribution is different. With the factor method, the probable tax liability can be determined very precisely.

If the wages are settled by a spouse with tax class 5 or the factor method, a tax return is mandatory. The tax class change is possible several times a year and can also be applied for online via Elster.

A married couple receives an unbelievable letter: They are to pay almost 37,000 euros a month for electricity from now on. Only after research by the “Rheinische Post” did the couple receive the redeeming message. Your electricity provider has made a serious mistake.

The municipal utilities are increasing their prices significantly: From January 2023, it will be twice as expensive for consumers. The electricity price brake dampens that – but only a little.

The federal and state governments have discussed the design of an electricity price brake and a gas price cap, which are to apply from January and February respectively. FOCUS online shows how much you could save by doing so – and who, despite the billions in aid, gets nothing.

The bargain event of the year is just around the corner: in addition to numerous technology hits, there are also shoes, jewellery, toys, household appliances and much more in the Black Friday deals. We have summarized the best advance offers for you in our overview!