I realize this is probably an odd time of year to talk about tax credits, but the summer months are the perfect time to talk about home renovations; and if we learn a little about tax deductions and tax credits along the way, it’s a good thing, right? Home renovation isn’t generally something that is tax deductible, but it can help minimize the amount of taxes that you pay. Some improvements may even qualify as medical expenses if they are deemed medically necessary. Let’s take a quick look at each of these categories.
*Please remember that I’m not a tax consultant. I’m simply passing along information that is readily available from the IRS website. None of this information should be taken as tax advice. That’s what your CPA is for; but I will help you design and implement your home improvements as needed.
Tax Credits for Home Improvement
The costs incurred in modifying your home for medical purposes may be deducted from your income as medical expenses. These renovations must be deemed medically necessary to qualify. Here are several examples:
Entrance or Exit Ramps – Immobility or impaired mobility require easier access to your home than steps or stairs.
Modifying the Bathroom – Impaired mobility creates problems for homeowners. They’re often faced with the option to either sell their home and move somewhere more accessible or make costly modifications on top of other medical expenses.
Lowering Cabinets – Kitchen cabinets, bathroom cabinets, and the bathroom vanity are often lowered to make life easier on people in wheelchairs, or those who may be reliant on a walker.
Widening Doors and Hallways – The average doorway and hallway are 36 inches wide. The average wheelchair clearance requirement is 32 inches wide. As you can see, this doesn’t leave much room for actual maneuverability.
Hand Rails – Adding hand rails near the toilet, shower, bath tub, and other areas where impaired mobility can cause problems helps the affected person maintain their independence.
The home improvement you implement must be deemed medically necessary in order to deduct it from your income as a medical expense. You can’t, for example, remodel your kitchen and claim it as medically necessary.
Many energy generation systems, upgraded appliances, windows, and doors are eligible for tax credits. Look for the Energy Star sticker on all major appliances to see how each one rates. You benefit doubly from upgrading the appliances in your kitchen during a kitchen remodel. New appliances are more energy efficient, so you can get the tax credit toward this year’s taxes and enjoy decreased energy bills for the life of the appliance. Win/Win.
As I stated above, I’m not a tax consultant. My primary goal for today’s blog was to make you aware of tax credits that you may be eligible for, and briefly describe them. Feel free to call my office to discuss more options for remodeling or modifying your home.