There are only a couple of weeks left until you need to file your taxes. If you’ve been working at home, odds are you are eligible for additional tax deductions, including the home office deduction.
The IRS has rules about whether or not you can take the home office tax deduction. To qualify, your home office must be used regularly and exclusively for business. Regularly means that you’re in your office on a regular basis, not just on occasion. Exclusive means that you can’t use the area for personal endeavors. It you’re in a situation in which only part of a room is used for business, you can claim that section, but you must measure it and use only that area in your calculations.
Another requirement is that your home office must meet at least one of the following:
– It’s your principal place of business. That means you can’t have a office elsewhere. Instead that majority of your work is done in your home office.
– You see clients or customer there.
– It’s a structure detached from the main house.
There are two exceptions to the rule that your home office is for business only:
– You run a day care center
– You store inventory for your business in a part of your home.
If you’ve met the requirements listed above, you might be able to deduct a percentage of the expenses used to run your home including:
– Real estate property taxes
– Mortgage interest
– Home depreciation
– Rental payments
– Home owners insurance
– Travel expenses to meet with clients
For information about how to claim the home office tax deduction, talk with a tax expert or read IRS Publication 587: Business Use of Your Home.
(NOTE: I’m not a tax expert, so please consult the IRS or a tax professional for more information and tips on home office tax deductions.)