Home office deduction rules are a bit tricky but all you need is a little attention to detail. If you work from home and plan to claim a home office tax deduction, consider the answer to these questions first:
Are you using your home office exclusively and regularly for either:
- Your principal place of business,
- A place to meet with clients in the normal course of your business,
- In any connection with your trade or business where the business portion of your home is a separate structure not attached to your home,
- On a regular basis for certain storage use (see storage of inventory or product samples), or
- As a daycare facility.
If you answered yes, to any one of the three options listed above, then you have met the requirements for a qualified home office and you can claim the deduction. You will be able to deduct a percentage of you household expenses such as rent, mortgage expenses, utility bills, repairs, insurance and home depreciation. The value will depend on what percentage of your total home square footage your home office occupies.
Stephen WIlliams, CPA and Partner of GYL Decauwer LLP, discusses the Section 179 tax deduction. This video will explain what Section 179 is, why it’s great for small businesses, and why now is the best time for small businesses to invest in new hardware, software, and machinery.
This article was published at Accounting Services of Charlotte, NC
Your Home Based Business Tax Deductions
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A big advantage of
working from home is the tax benefits of operating a home based business. Working from home Allows you to deduct portions of bills that you are already paying to live there.
You can deduct home expenses
if you actually work in your home. It is easiest to do this if you have a room set aside for your business. Measure out how big that room is in proportion to the house, and you can deduct expenses using that percentage.
For example, if your place of doing business takes up 5% of your house, you can deduct 5% of your heating expenses for the days you work. (In other words, if you do not work weekends, you can not deduct for weekends.)
You can deduct items such as mortgage interest (though not your mortgage itself), electricity, telephone, insurance, and expenses for maintenance and repair. In general, you can deduct the portion of expenses that directly Relates to your business.
You can deduct costs for your internet service provider in proportion to the amount you use it for your business, too. If it’s used completely for business you can deduct it all, but be certain before you do this that you are not using it for other reasons.
Having a CPA do your taxes for you has major benefits. They have computer software made up by tax pros and former IRS workers that you would not ever be able to use unless you went through lots of accounting training.
everything working 100% honest with your CPA about. If you are called in for an audit your CPA will tell you to say nothing but your name and your CPA does all the talking. The IRS has to find mistakes not you. If a CPA does your tax deductions you will get you would never know to take and your CPA will therefore take away deductions you can not legitimately take.
A CPA will cost you more but will get you much more back. Tax filings done by CPAs are far less likely to be called in for audits because the IRS knows the CPA’s reputation is at stake with every tax form filled out and so the CPA will be very careful that every little detail is done correctly.
Keep a separate notebook
for tax deductions on each page and make a heading for all possible deductions like advertising, supplies, repair parts, phone, computer, etc. and write them down and save ALL your receipts in a separate large envelope. Write your deductions in this notebook, everyday happen, as they. Remember, your tax preparation is a daily, year round effort and is an important part of your business.
Write everything in your notebook that could be a deduction and then at the end of the year let your CPA decide what is and is not a deduction. He or she knows and you do not. It is their job to know. This way you will not miss out on any deductions you do not know for sure on and you will not take any deductions you do not have coming. Pretty neat huh?
You will get a lot bigger income tax refund this way and have a clear conscience you did all the right things and you will not have any worries about a scary IRS audit. Talk over with your CPA what he thinks about the way you are keeping records and learn from him or her better ways to do it. They will usually have valuable tips for you to help you run your business better. This chit chat at the end of your tax preparation is invaluable to you.
The tax benefits of operating a home based business enable you to deduct things you would otherwise be paying in full. If you are considering a business from home, it’s a good way to lower your costs. This is just one more advantage of working from home.Source:http://www.irs.gov/faqs/faq-kw82.html Plus my own life experience of business tax over 40 years