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The IRS is allowing a streamline method for business owners to take the home office deduction. But is this method really being implemented to make things easier for you?
Or, is it making more money for the IRS?
The new IRS rule for 2013 allows taxpayers to deduct $5 per square foot, up to a maximum of 300 square feet (or $1,500). Choosing this option eliminates the need to complete the 43-line Form 8829 that has been required in the past to claim the home office deduction. How nice of the IRS right? Not so fast! I've reviewed several 2012 returns that had a home office deduction and each of them would yield a lower tax deduction under the new rules. Your choice: “take advantage” of the IRS’s streamlined option, or spend a few extra minutes figuring your home office deduction as usual and put more money in your pocket.
Always be careful of taking advice from somebody who stands to benefit from your decision. And always be weary of changes that “help you” and "make things easier", when in reality the collector is making more money!