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our house-iversary and homeownership tax deductions

 Thank you TaxSlayer for sponsoring this post. Get simple pricing with no surprises when you e-file with TaxSlayer this tax season!

This month Neil and I celebrated our 2nd house-iversary.  Jan 6th marked two years in our home together, our first that we’ve ever owned.  Those 2 years flew by really fast and I’ve learned a lot along the way.  There have been smiles and tears, costly repairs/replacements and fun renovations.  Homeownership can be the most exciting event to happen but also the scariest.  While you finally have your own space to truly make your own, you also have all of the responsibility that comes with that space.  There is no longer a landlord to call when something breaks, busts or explodes and you also have to *gasp* file taxes as a homeowner.

My taxes have always seemed complicated and keep becoming more so as the years go by.  Life events like marriage, divorce and child birth impact the way you do your taxes and that can be intimidating.  Buying and selling homes also changes things and perhaps the most complicated and confusing part for us has also been our self-employed status.

As a blogger/freelancer, I have income coming in from not just one employer but MANY.  Neil is in the same boat as I am since he is also self-employed.  As a professional photographer, he has many clients and income sources.  Combined, we are a tax filing nightmare!  We both have a lot of expenses to claim as well: me, everything I have to buy to keep my blog going from web hosting to recipe ingredients, Neil, lens rentals and travel expenses.  It’s fair to say we have a giant bucket of receipts to sort through every year.  Scary.

Filing taxes when new life events or changes happen doesn’t have to be terrifying anymore, though.  In fact, filing taxes online with TaxSlayer simplifies the process and takes the confusion factor out.  TaxSlayer is an all inclusive, affordable option that you can trust as it comes with over 50 years of tax preparation experience.

Filing taxes online is an easier way than the traditional and you don’t even need to be tech-savvy.  TaxSlayer offers free live phone and e-mail support to all customers so you have help along the way – no mistakes to be made.  TaxSlayer wants you to know about all of the deductions you qualify for and if you’re a new homeowner, here are a few to think about:

  • go green.  Update your home to be more energy efficient for a tax credit (which is even better than a deduction).  Possible qualifiers: insulation systems, energy efficient sky lights, doors windows, roofs and qualifying air conditioners, heat pumps, pool pumps, etc.  You can get a credit for up to 10% of their cost.  You can receive a larger credit for solar powered generators and heaters.
  • mortgage interest.  This is the biggest deduction homeowners will come across.  You can deduct interest on up to $1 million of debt acquired to purchase or improve your home.  Since at the beginning of your mortgage, most of your payment is interest, the majority of your payment may be tax deductible.
  • home equity loans.  There may come a time when you want to borrow against your house for a loan (college tuition, etc).  As a general rule, you can deduct interest on up to $100,000 of home-equity debt as mortgage interest.
  • real estate taxes.  You can deduct your local property taxes that you pay each year.  Each time your real estate taxes go up (because they will) don’t fret as your deduction amount also goes up.
  • home improvement.  Save all receipts and records of the improvements you make to your house from landscaping to renovations.  In the future, if you sell your house and incur capital gains taxes (say you made a huge profit) these home improvement bills will lessen your gains total.

So take that leap, whatever it may be, and don’t be intimidated by the changes it will make in your tax filing process.  Get married, have babies, take a new job and get carried across the threshold into your new home!

At TaxSlayer, you can choose what level of service you want from free – premium.  There are no out of pocket fees as they offer you the option to deduct your filing fees directly from your federal tax refund.  TaxSlayer guarantees your maximum refund + 100% accuracy or they will reimburse any federal and/or state penalties or interest fees.  File now at TaxSlayer.com!

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of CLEVER and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

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