A financial expert is telling residents of Florida and elsewhere to consider making certain fiscal moves before the year ends. With 2012 already in full swing, this advice can also be applied this year before 2013 catches us by surprise. By listening to his advice, many people may find themselves with the best tax minimization they have had in years, which can help with estate planning down the line.

One of the suggestions the expert made was to make the January mortgage payment in December to avoid the interest that will be accrued. By doing so, an individual can save money and write off the payment on this year's taxes rather than those from next year. Another move to ensure the minimum amount of tax paid is by making a charitable contribution. Contributions such as this may be made from the heart and from the mind because of their financial benefits toward the contributor.

But donating enough to make this year's charitable contribution can be hard after a tough year in which many struggled financially. It is suggested that anyone hoping to donate that cannot currently -- as long as the contributor knows for certain they will have the money come January, in this case January 2013 -- should consider putting the deposit on a credit card. Be careful though; without the ability to repay soon, the donator may lose the saved taxes to interest on the credit card.

Another way to minimize taxes is to donate belongings. Cleaning out closets and basements in the hopes of finding unused clothes, furniture and household goods can give a person the ability to donate a hefty pile of used assets. As long as the items are donated to a qualified charity and are considered in good condition, the government will accept the tax write-offs. An itemized list and legitimate current market value estimates should be used to find a suitable contribution amount.

This advice can easily be applied to anyone looking to minimize an estate tax burden that they are worried about passing on to a beneficiary. This year can be a good time to start planning for the future.

Source: Los Angeles Times, "Make time for financial planning now, save money on taxes later," Kathy M. Kristof, Dec. 24, 2011