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Financial Planning > Tax Planning > Tax Deductions

6 tax deductions for the work-at-home advisor

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Are you one of the almost 6 million Americans who work from home? If so, read on to see five popular deductions you might be able to claim on next year’s taxes.

1. Home office. If you have a dedicated space used exclusively and regularly for work purposes, you may qualify for a home office deduction. But having laptop setup at the kitchen table won’t qualify you.

2. Home care expenses. If your home office qualifies, you can also deduct a portion of home care expenses. For example, if your office is 15 percent of the square footage of your total home space, you can deduct 15 percent of all your home care bills, such as utilities, mortgage interest, real estate taxes, maintenance and even lawn care. You can even deduct depreciation because the home office is considered a business structure.

3. Supplies. Keep the receipts for items you buy to keep your home office running — especially items like copy paper, pens, file folders, etc.

4. Internet access. If you use your computer for your stay-at-home career in your office, you can deduct your Internet access costs.

5. Subscriptions and memberships. If you do any kind of research related to your business or have magazine subscriptions and memberships to professional organizations related to your business, they can also be claimed.

6. “Direct” expenses. If you have direct expenses, such as repairing the home office or painting it, you may deduct 100 percent of the bills. You don’t have to do a pro-rata share.

Note: Home office expenses cannot exceed the business income from the home office.

Source: U.S. Census Bureau. Labor Day 2010.

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