Why I Got a Large Tax Return

Since Wednesday’s post, a few people have asked how it’s possible to get such a large tax return. The short answer is actually the most obvious: I’m a university student.

Tuition is expensive and one benefit of being a student is that you can claim a portion of it at tax time. This year, the amount I claimed is what made up about 2/3 of my return. So… maybe it pays to be a student!? Hmm.

As for the rest, I thought I’d give you a quick rundown of what was included in this year’s taxes. (Numbers may not always be included.)

Because I took 4 months off work, while moving to and looking for a job in Toronto, I only made about $38,000 in 2022. But I did something 4.5 years ago that has always helped me get at least a small return. When I first started working with my current employer, I told them to take an extra $20 of income tax off each of my paycheques. That is $520/year I have never missed and always see a return because of.

This year, I got the biggest T2202A of my entire post-secondary education. And I’m getting about 38% of it back. (Ok, I’m not really getting it. My credit card is. But you know what I mean!)

RRSP Contributions
If you remember, I only contributed a measly $450 to my RRSPs this year. But that small amount of money added more than $100 to my return.

Medical Receipts
This is one of those things I just assume everyone knows they can do but this week proved that that may not be true. So, every year, I claim all medical-related costs that were not covered by my benefits package. This includes birth control, prescriptions, added costs at the dentist and any visits to the chiropractor. If your receipts total more than 3% of your gross income, you will get a portion of it back.

Charitable Donations
I donated about $200 in 2022, mostly to the Victoria BC SPCA. The amount I’m getting back is nothing to write home (or blog) about, but I don’t donate for the tax benefit anyway.

And that’s it!

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