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December 2020

Working from a home office has become a reality for many of us this year. But what, exactly, are the rules to be able to deduct your home office expenses on your tax return? Read about some ideas to help you qualify for the deduction.

Also in this month’s edition is an article outlining common tax surprises, and some ideas for small businesses to build strong, banking relationships during these uncertain times. Also read about a number of creative ideas that can help parents keep their kids engaged while dealing with the challenges posed by virtual learning.

Please call if you would like to discuss how this information could impact your situation. If you know someone who can benefit from this newsletter, feel free to send it to them.

Contents

Turn Your Home Office Into a Tax Deduction

Turn Your Home Office Into a Tax Deduction imageIf you are working from home for the first time in 2020, you may be wondering if your home office is tax deductible. The bad news? If you’re working from home for an employer, you normally can’t deduct your home office expenses.

Here’s a quick look at the basic requirements to be able to deduct your home office expenses, along with some suggestions for how to qualify for the deduction if you’re currently working for your company as an employee.

The basics

There are two requirements for having a tax-deductible home office:

Looking at these two criteria, everyone that is now required to work from home probably meets both qualifications. If you're a W-2 employee, however, you can't deduct your home office expenses on your tax return.

Solving the problem

Here are three options for solving your problem of being a W-2 employee and qualifying to deduct your home office expenses on your tax return.

What if none of these options for deducting home office expenses are feasible for you? While you won't be able to deduct your home office expenses on your tax return, you may still be able to end up financially ahead with the help of your employer.

Get reimbursed by your company

There's no question you are picking up some of the expense of your home office with added electrical, heating, telephone, internet and other expenses. One way companies are solving this is by allowing employees to submit valid expense reports to cover some of these extra costs. They do this by setting up an accountable plan. With financial pressures on businesses, this might be a tough subject to broach, but if the system is already in place you may be able to find a way to get some of your home office expense reimbursed.

So if you're stuck working as a W-2 employee, look into whether your employer offers reimbursement for home office expenses.

Figuring out how to properly deduct your home office or get reimbursed by your employer can be a lot more completed than it appears. If you need help, please call.


Common IRS Surprises

No one likes surprises from the IRS, but they do occasionally happen. Here are some examples of unpleasant tax situations you could find yourself in and what to do about them.

No one likes surprises when filing their taxes. With a little planning now, you can reduce the chance of having a surprise hit your tax return later.


A Happy Banker Makes for a Happy Business

A Happy Banker Makes for a Happy Business imageWith the onset of COVID-19, small business banks are more nervous about potential loan losses than ever. Here are several tips for your business to maintain a great working relationship with your lender. These same tips can also be used if you want to plant seeds with your banker for potential future loans.

Remember your banker probably has their hands full right now. These tips allow them to spend more time on their problem loans, and one of them will not be yours.


Ideas to Help the Virtual Learning Challenge

Virtual learning is a way of life again for many kids as we head towards winter.

Mayo Clinic psychologist Dr. Craig Sawchuk says that families will need to adapt to changing circumstances this school year.

"We've all been dealing with uncertainty," Sawchuk said in a recent Mayo Clinic Q&A podcast. "We need to be flexible with the format of how our kids learn. It's all going to look different, regardless of whether your kids are doing in-person, virtual or a hybrid learning model. And it's subject to change."

Here are some ideas shared by creative parents and experts to help maintain your family's sanity, while trying to navigate virtual learning through the extended stay-at-home winter days.



Newsletter Archive

Please note: Some material may be time-sensitive and may no longer apply.
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  1. Posted on: 2020-11-03
  2. Posted on: 2020-10-06
  3. Posted on: 2020-09-01
  4. Posted on: 2020-08-04
  5. Posted on: 2020-07-01
  6. Posted on: 2020-06-02
  7. Posted on: 2020-05-05
  8. Posted on: 2020-03-31
  9. Posted on: 2020-03-03
  10. Posted on: 2020-02-04
  11. Posted on: 2019-12-31