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jaybow
01-19-2012, 01:18 PM
Is it possible to claim your garage in any way for use of the business as shop space or for the storage of equipment. My garage space is completely used up pretty much by everything for the business.

CLARK LAWN
01-19-2012, 02:27 PM
yes you can. talk to a CPA and he will explain it to you.

Landscape Poet
01-19-2012, 02:58 PM
Is it possible to claim your garage in any way for use of the business as shop space or for the storage of equipment. My garage space is completely used up pretty much by everything for the business.

Yes, and you should be if you are truly using it 100% for business purposes. It is not any different than your home office....what ever % of your home is actually truly used for business only purposes....you should be deducting that % of the home expenses in relations.

My friend a good CPA Will not cost you more than $600 - and the fact that you are on here asking this tells me that they will more than pay for themselves. Get a CPA and have them cover all aspects of your business as you do taxes this year, it will be a learning process that will better help you understand your true cost of doing business and how to make smarter business choices in relation to expenses.

JBlawn
01-19-2012, 03:32 PM
Yes also office space. If you dont use 100% of the garage they will just figure out how much you use then calculate the space to the sq. footage of the house then take off accordingly

Landscape Poet
01-19-2012, 04:00 PM
Yes also office space. If you dont use 100% of the garage they will just figure out how much you use then calculate the space to the sq. footage of the house then take off accordingly

Correct - I seriously doubt they will come to your home and measure for you though if they are a good CPA....:) Have your measurements ready for them and let them figure out what is accurate. Also remember if your home is being used as the primary business location when you go grocery shopping and pick up paper towels, T.P, Laundry detergent etc....a percentage of all those cost are also able to be deducted....so highlight those items on the receipt and put away for tax prep. Many many other things a CPA will help you remember too beside what little we have covered here.

Richard Martin
01-19-2012, 05:05 PM
I recommend reading this primer from the IRS regarding home offices and other home business uses.

http://www.irs.gov/newsroom/article/0,,id=163079,00.html

Be also aware that if you Google "IRS red flag" in 99 out of 100 cases the home office expense is in the list.

weeze
01-19-2012, 05:54 PM
interesting

Example: An attorney uses the den in his home to write legal briefs or prepare clients’ tax returns. The family also uses the den for recreation. The den is not used exclusively in the attorney’s profession, so a business deduction cannot be claimed for its use.

so therefore if anything not used in your business is stored in the same garage then it cannot be written off as a deduction. i guess if you wanna write anything off then you better make a room of your house or a garage only for business stuff and nothing else. i use my rooms and garage for everything not just business. a good example is you can't write off your truck if it's also your personal truck. you can write off the mileage driven while working though. if you have a business only truck you can write off that truck and all the maintenance on that truck etc. as well as the mileage.

Landscape Poet
01-19-2012, 05:55 PM
Be also aware that if you Google "IRS red flag" in 99 out of 100 cases the home office expense is in the list.

Red Flag does not mean anything if your deductions are accurate however! I would not choose not to take the deduction because it might lead to a increased chance audit if that is true. That would simply be throwing money away. :nono::nono::nono:

32vld
01-19-2012, 06:03 PM
$600 is that the friend for you or any one off the street?

How much will spending $600 get someone back on their income tax?

Any body have numbers to show how much this kind of write off gives?

Landscape Poet
01-19-2012, 06:11 PM
$600 is that the friend for you or any one off the street?

How much will spending $600 get someone back on their income tax?

Any body have numbers to show how much this kind of write off gives?

Not a friend, not a discounted rate, that was roughly my last year cost for my personal and my business returns being prepared. I think actual cost was closer to the 5 mark. That is with me doing some of the leg work however...if you think you are just going to walk in and hand them a years worth of receipts in a wal-mart bag and tell them to account....be prepared to pay for those services.

How much can it save you? How many deductions have you learned about reading this thread so far? The CPA will help guide you and remind you of deductions that you may have not considered or forgotten about. The will help guide you to success for the next year on what to do better to prepare and further your deductions appropriately.

If you are doing any kind of volume and doing the taxes yourself, I would say in most cases you are leaving money on the table. The laws change and these guys keep up with them, you and I cut lawns....not the same catagory of information about tax code being delivered to us.

32vld
01-19-2012, 06:43 PM
Not a friend, not a discounted rate, that was roughly my last year cost for my personal and my business returns being prepared. I think actual cost was closer to the 5 mark. That is with me doing some of the leg work however...if you think you are just going to walk in and hand them a years worth of receipts in a wal-mart bag and tell them to account....be prepared to pay for those services.

How much can it save you? How many deductions have you learned about reading this thread so far? The CPA will help guide you and remind you of deductions that you may have not considered or forgotten about. The will help guide you to success for the next year on what to do better to prepare and further your deductions appropriately.

If you are doing any kind of volume and doing the taxes yourself, I would say in most cases you are leaving money on the table. The laws change and these guys keep up with them, you and I cut lawns....not the same catagory of information about tax code being delivered to us.


Any body have numbers to show how much using a garage or room in the house for office space as a write off gives?

Looking for food for thought. Too small to use a CPA for last year. Hoping to need one this year.

Southscapes03
01-19-2012, 06:54 PM
I recommend reading this primer from the IRS regarding home offices and other home business uses.

http://www.irs.gov/newsroom/article/0,,id=163079,00.html

Be also aware that if you Google "IRS red flag" in 99 out of 100 cases the home office expense is in the list.

this is exactly why i choose not to claim any percentage of my home as a home office!!! I mean really, I do billing sitting on the couch watching TV, i really don't care that much about that deduction:hammerhead:

Richard Martin
01-19-2012, 06:54 PM
Almost everyone here is right. When you actually start maximizing the home office deduction it can make things very complicated, particularly if depreciation is factored in. Here's a little snipette from a tax website on this deduction and how complicated it can get.

"Sale of house. The portion of the house used for business is not part of your principal residence. That means if you sell the house, that amount of the gain times your business usage can't be excluded. For example, your total gain is $100,000 and your business usage is 15%. You've got to pay capital gains tax on $15,000. At 20% that would be $3,000. It could offset several years of tax savings. You can avoid this problem if you don't claim the home office deduction for at least 2 years before the sale."

You will need a CPA.

Richard Martin
01-19-2012, 06:56 PM
Any body have numbers to show how much using a garage or room in the house for office space as a write off gives?

Looking for food for thought. Too small to use a CPA for last year. Hoping to need one this year.

It really depends. Read this for some guidance.

http://www.smbiz.com/sbw2069.html#s6

Landscape Poet
01-19-2012, 06:58 PM
Any body have numbers to show how much using a garage or room in the house for office space as a write off gives?

Looking for food for thought. Too small to use a CPA for last year. Hoping to need one this year.

Without digging out my return from last year I want to say the square footage of the total dwelling that is being used exclusively for business is 15% - I wanted it to be more but the wife is not crazy about me taking over the guest bedroom completely as we are located next to Disney and do get family that likes to visit and stay with us for that reason. If I were able to however remove the bed and dresser in there I could take much more square footage for my deduction vs the 36 square foot I take now for home office.
Figure out what 15% of you power and water bill is for the year. 100% of your internet cost if you do business over the net. 15% of your home phone line if you do not have a line used exclusively for the business is my understanding. 15% of your HOA dues, 15% of your insurance cost.

Do you see how quickly your numbers can add up. The key here is working with a CPA to make sure you are following proper guidelines.....and ensuring on your end if you are taking deductions or telling them that the cost are truly there and our percentage is accurate. For example as Richard pointed out - Home office can make you more likely to be audited but if you and your CPU were accurate and honest with your deductions you have nothing to worry about. For example if you are a new lawn business that had a Net Profit of 10K this year - but are taking 40K of deductions for your home office.....you might have a audit coming. From what my CPA informed me, what causes most Home Office deductions to flagged is people taking it to the extreme....for a example a 55 in plasma to watch the weather report on is not a deduction that is really needed for our business...but I bet you out there somewhere some silly lawn boy has tried it or something similar

Landscape Poet
01-19-2012, 07:04 PM
Almost everyone here is right. When you actually start maximizing the home office deduction it can make things very complicated, particularly if depreciation is factored in. Here's a little snipette from a tax website on this deduction and how complicated it can get.

"Sale of house. The portion of the house used for business is not part of your principal residence. That means if you sell the house, that amount of the gain times your business usage can't be excluded. For example, your total gain is $100,000 and your business usage is 15%. You've got to pay capital gains tax on $15,000. At 20% that would be $3,000. It could offset several years of tax savings. You can avoid this problem if you don't claim the home office deduction for at least 2 years before the sale."

You will need a CPA.

Yes, I say we are both accurate and i do not disagree with you warning others, I understand you hesitation to claim a home office deduction....but just like the above poster that chooses not too because it is not worth it? Really, that is like saying this lady owes me money...but it is not worth the hassle of trying to collect. Money is money and if you are a true business you are not going to with intent leave money on the table for the Gov't to take that they are not due. This is all said assuming you are putting accurate numbers...if you are claiming the whole room when you are not using it for business use but just rather a little 36 square foot desk area....big difference

I think the difference between us and some others here Richard is that we have actually become educated by either researching ourselves or using our CPA to guide us through and many on here are surprised to learn of some of the deductions they are leaving on the table.

Florida Gardener
01-19-2012, 07:06 PM
Without digging out my return from last year I want to say the square footage of the total dwelling that is being used exclusively for business is 15% - I wanted it to be more but the wife is not crazy about me taking over the guest bedroom completely as we are located next to Disney and do get family that likes to visit and stay with us for that reason. If I were able to however remove the bed and dresser in there I could take much more square footage for my deduction vs the 36 square foot I take now for home office.
Figure out what 15% of you power and water bill is for the year. 100% of your internet cost if you do business over the net. 15% of your home phone line if you do not have a line used exclusively for the business is my understanding. 15% of your HOA dues, 15% of your insurance cost.

Do you see how quickly your numbers can add up. The key here is working with a CPA to make sure you are following proper guidelines.....and ensuring on your end if you are taking deductions or telling them that the cost are truly there and our percentage is accurate. For example as Richard pointed out - Home office can make you more likely to be audited but if you and your CPU were accurate and honest with your deductions you have nothing to worry about. For example if you are a new lawn business that had a Net Profit of 10K this year - but are taking 40K of deductions for your home office.....you might have a audit coming. From what my CPA informed me, what causes most Home Office deductions to flagged is people taking it to the extreme....for a example a 55 in plasma to watch the weather report on is not a deduction that is really needed for our business...but I bet you out there somewhere some silly lawn boy has tried it or something similar
What about that hottub I use after a long summers day work?
Posted via Mobile Device

Landscape Poet
01-19-2012, 07:10 PM
What about that hottub I use after a long summers day work?
Posted via Mobile Device

Ummmm....I am thinking not...but I am sure there maybe something in there where if you are rehabbing a work related illness it might be....not sure..but again it is worth asking the CPA about.....I am guessing no....but you never know, that is why you pay them, to keep up and research this stuff.

weeze
01-19-2012, 07:14 PM
i'm just a small business. i let turbo tax walk me through everything step by step. it clearly tells you what you can and cannot deduct. if you are a bigger business then a cpa would be the way to go for sure because the bigger you are the more complicated things are. i'm solo and small so it's pretty simple and straightforward.

Florida Gardener
01-19-2012, 07:17 PM
Ummmm....I am thinking not...but I am sure there maybe something in there where if you are rehabbing a work related illness it might be....not sure..but again it is worth asking the CPA about.....I am guessing no....but you never know, that is why you pay them, to keep up and research this stuff.

Mike it was a joke...
Posted via Mobile Device

Richard Martin
01-19-2012, 07:22 PM
I think the difference between us and some others here Richard is that we have actually become educated by either researching ourselves or using our CPA to guide us through and many on here are surprised to learn of some of the deductions they are leaving on the table.

I agree. It's the deductions that people could take and the people that take deductions that they shouldn't. It goes both ways. I see it all here at Lawnsite, as you do too. :)

Landscape Poet
01-19-2012, 09:27 PM
Mike it was a joke...
Posted via Mobile Device

I know, I got it, but as soon as I said no, some smart tail would be on here telling me how he deducted his because he had a work injury and a doctors note :rolleyes:

Who the heck wants to be in a hot tub after a day down here? I want a slightly warm shower with it ending a cold after a longs day work...if I am lucky and have enough left in me then I go to the HOA pool and jump in and enjoy the evening .

weeze
01-20-2012, 12:59 AM
i know i take slightly warm to cold showers all summer long. :laugh:

dhardin53
01-20-2012, 08:24 AM
Shop deductions is OK but I don't do it, it to much of a hassle and potential for a audit.I took the home office and shop for years when I was running a other business and It did save me some. I had to show a drawing of the entire home and where my work space was. Plus my accountant wanted a photograph of each work space. In the photo there was to be no personal stuff NONE. All information was keep in my personal file not submitted to the IRS.

Several have asked how much will I get back? If your business is loosing money (operating in the red) you will get some money back I guess. Other wise shop expenses is just another CODB (cost of doing business). Or just that much less you will pay in. Not get back.


My shop space was 20% of my home at the time. I took 20% of my utility's, house payment, insurance. This amount was deducted from my net profit, or adjusted gross income. I don't get money back I pay about 42% of my adjusted net profit in some form of taxes.

If you garage is not heated or dose not have water or a toilet you may not be able to use your utility's as a deduction. Just guessing. My advice if your really wanting to not pay to much in taxes is to rent a separate garage/shop. Then it is easy to determine that it is not your personnel living space. And everything is deducted no questions asked. But it must be a separate address not your garage out back.

dhardin53
01-20-2012, 08:42 AM
A deduction that many forget is the work cell phone. You must have a separate home phone and a work phone.

Landscape Poet
01-20-2012, 08:49 AM
Jesus Christ - What is wrong with all you people not taking deductions that you are clearly entitled too? If you have a home office...take the deduction...but take the appropriate one. If you use your garage as your storage..make sure to take the proper deduction. If you should get audited which could happen if you take it or not, then at least your information is accurate as you know it and the audit should go fine.

It is funny how I read a million threads on here in the political section and million comments on regular threads and all I hear you lawn turds talk about is my taxes are too high, dont raise taxes, we should have a tax increase of any kind. But here you turds are just giving your money away. Yes you may not get money back - but that deduction means you are going to pay less in the overall picture. So one of two thing boys - take your deductions that your your rite to do......or shut up when someone mentions taxes being too high or a tax increase....cause apparently you have money to throw away to the Gov't anyway.

soloscaperman
01-20-2012, 03:44 PM
Shop deductions is OK but I don't do it, it to much of a hassle and potential for a audit.I took the home office and shop for years when I was running a other business and It did save me some. I had to show a drawing of the entire home and where my work space was. Plus my accountant wanted a photograph of each work space. In the photo there was to be no personal stuff NONE. All information was keep in my personal file not submitted to the IRS.

Several have asked how much will I get back? If your business is loosing money (operating in the red) you will get some money back I guess. Other wise shop expenses is just another CODB (cost of doing business). Or just that much less you will pay in. Not get back.


My shop space was 20% of my home at the time. I took 20% of my utility's, house payment, insurance. This amount was deducted from my net profit, or adjusted gross income. I don't get money back I pay about 42% of my adjusted net profit in some form of taxes.

If you garage is not heated or dose not have water or a toilet you may not be able to use your utility's as a deduction. Just guessing. My advice if your really wanting to not pay to much in taxes is to rent a separate garage/shop. Then it is easy to determine that it is not your personnel living space. And everything is deducted no questions asked. But it must be a separate address not your garage out back.

Why not find a toilet at a junkyard place it in your garage and take a pic then show it to your CPA? Would that work?