If you qualify to deduct expenses for the business use of your home, you must divide the expenses of operating your home between personal and business use. This section discusses the types of expenses you may have and gives examples and brief explanations of these expenses. taxmap/pubs/p587-002.htm#en_us_publink1000226332
The part of a home operating expense you can use to figure your deduction depends on both of the following.
- Whether the expense is direct, indirect, or unrelated.
- The percentage of your home used for business.
Table 1, next, describes the types of expenses you may have and the extent to which they are deductible.
Table 1. Types of Expenses
|Direct||Expenses only for |
the business part
of your home.
|Deductible in full.*|
| ||Examples: |
Painting or repairs
only in the area
used for business.
May be only partially
deductible in a daycare
facility. See Daycare
|Indirect||Expenses for |
and running your
|Deductible based on the percentage of your home used for business.*|
| ||Examples: |
|Unrelated||Expenses only for |
the parts of your
home not used
| ||Examples: |
Lawn care or painting
a room not used
|*Subject to the deduction limit, discussed earlier.|
Form 8829 and the Worksheet To Figure the Deduction for Business Use of Your Home (both illustrated near the end of this publication) have separate columns for direct and indirect expenses.
Generally, you cannot deduct expenses that are related to tax-exempt allowances. However, if you receive a tax-exempt parsonage allowance or a tax-exempt military allowance, your expenses for mortgage interest and real estate taxes are deductible under the normal rules. No deduction is allowed for other expenses related to the tax-exempt allowance.
If your housing is provided free of charge and the value of the housing is tax exempt, you cannot deduct the rental value of any portion of the housing. taxmap/pubs/p587-002.htm#en_us_publink1000226336
Certain expenses are deductible whether or not you use your home for business. If you qualify to deduct business use of the home expenses, use the business percentage of these expenses to figure your total business use of the home deduction. These expenses include the following.
- Real estate taxes.
- Qualified mortgage insurance premiums.
- Deductible mortgage interest.
- Casualty losses.
Other expenses are deductible only if you use your home for business. You can use the business percentage of these expenses to figure your total business use of the home deduction. These expenses generally include (but are not limited to) the following.
- Depreciation (covered under Depreciating Your Home, later).
- Security system.
- Utilities and services.
To figure the business part of your real estate taxes, multiply the real estate taxes paid by the percentage of your home used for business.
For more information on the deduction for real estate taxes, see Publication 530, Tax Information for First-Time Homeowners.taxmap/pubs/p587-002.htm#en_us_publink1000226338
To figure the business part of your deductible mortgage interest, multiply this interest by the percentage of your home used for business. You can include interest on a second mortgage in this computation. If your total mortgage debt is more than $1,000,000 or your home equity debt is more than $100,000, your deduction may be limited. For more information on what interest is deductible, see Publication 936, Home Mortgage Interest Deduction. taxmap/pubs/p587-002.htm#en_us_publink1000226339
To figure the business part of your qualified mortgage insurance premiums, multiply the premiums by the percentage of your home used for business. You can include premiums for insurance on a second mortgage in this computation. If your adjusted gross income is more than $100,000 ($50,000 if your filing status is married filing separately), your deduction may be limited. For more information, see Publication 936, Home Mortgage Interest Deduction, and Line 13 in the instructions for Schedule A (Form 1040). taxmap/pubs/p587-002.htm#en_us_publink1000226340
If you have a casualty loss on your home that you use for business, treat the casualty loss as a direct expense, an indirect expense, or an unrelated expense, depending on the property affected.
- A direct expense is the loss on the portion of the property you use only in your business. Use the entire loss to figure the business use of the home deduction.
- An indirect expense is the loss on property you use for both business and personal purposes. Use only the business portion to figure the deduction.
- An unrelated expense is the loss on property you do not use in your business. Do not use any of the loss to figure the deduction.
You meet the rules to take a deduction for an office in your home that is 10% of the total area of your house. A storm damages your roof. This is an indirect expense as the roof is part of the whole house and is considered to be used both for business and personal purposes. You would complete Form 4684, Casualties and Thefts, to report your loss. You complete both section A (Personal Use Property) and section B (Business and Income-Producing Property) as your home is used both for business and personal purposes. Since you use 90% of your home for personal purposes, use 90% of the cost or adjusted basis of your home, insurance or other reimbursement, and fair market value, both before and after the storm, to figure the amounts to enter on lines 2, 3, 5, and 6 of Form 4684. Since you use 10% of your home for business purposes, use 10% of the cost or adjusted basis of your home, insurance or other reimbursement, and fair market value, both before and after the storm, to figure the amounts to enter on lines 21 and 22 of Form 4684.taxmap/pubs/p587-002.htm#en_us_publink1000226342
If you are filing Schedule C (Form 1040), get Form 8829 and follow the instructions for casualty losses. If you are an employee or a partner, or you file Schedule F (Form 1040), use the Worksheet To Figure the Deduction for Business Use of Your Home, near the end of this publication. You will also need to get Form 4684, Casualties and Thefts.taxmap/pubs/p587-002.htm#en_us_publink1000226343
For more information on casualty losses, see Publication 547, Casualties, Disasters, and Thefts.taxmap/pubs/p587-002.htm#en_us_publink1000226344
You can deduct the cost of insurance that covers the business part of your home. However, if your insurance premium gives you coverage for a period that extends past the end of your tax year, you can deduct only the business percentage of the part of the premium that gives you coverage for your tax year. You can deduct the business percentage of the part that applies to the following year in that year. taxmap/pubs/p587-002.htm#en_us_publink1000226345
If you rent the home you occupy and meet the requirements for business use of the home, you can deduct part of the rent you pay. To figure your deduction, multiply your rent payments by the percentage of your home used for business.
If you own your home, you cannot deduct the fair rental value of your home. However, see Depreciating Your Home, later.taxmap/pubs/p587-002.htm#en_us_publink1000226346
The cost of repairs that relate to your business, including labor (other than your own labor), is a deductible expense. For example, a furnace repair benefits the entire home. If you use 10% of your home for business, you can deduct 10% of the cost of the furnace repair.
Repairs keep your home in good working order over its useful life. Examples of common repairs are patching walls and floors, painting, wallpapering, repairing roofs and gutters, and mending leaks. However, repairs are sometimes treated as a permanent improvement. See Permanent improvements, later, under Depreciating Your Home. taxmap/pubs/p587-002.htm#en_us_publink1000226347
If you install a security system that protects all the doors and windows in your home, you can deduct the business part of the expenses you incur to maintain and monitor the system. You also can take a depreciation deduction for the part of the cost of the security system relating to the business use of your home. taxmap/pubs/p587-002.htm#en_us_publink1000226348
Expenses for utilities and services, such as electricity, gas, trash removal, and cleaning services, are primarily personal expenses. However, if you use part of your home for business, you can deduct the business part of these expenses. Generally, the business percentage for utilities is the same as the percentage of your home used for business. taxmap/pubs/p587-002.htm#en_us_publink1000226349
The basic local telephone service charge, including taxes, for the first telephone line into your home is a nondeductible personal expense. However, charges for business long-distance phone calls on that line, as well as the cost of a second line into your home used exclusively for business, are deductible business expenses. Do not include these expenses as a cost of using your home for business. Deduct these charges separately on the appropriate form or schedule. For example, if you file Schedule C (Form 1040), deduct these expenses on line 25, Utilities (instead of line 30).