- half of my homeowner’s insurance
- half of my mortgage interest
- a portion of my cell phone bill
- half of all repairs/maintenance I did on the exterior of the house
- half of my water bill, and a portion of my gas bill (since the water heater, for the whole house, is on my gas bill)
- half of my property taxes
- most expenses directly related to running/maintaining the duplex — cleaning/maintenance costs, advertising, repairs, etc.
- my rental license fee
the big one…..
I was able to depreciate half of my house (the rental part). I’m writing off a portion of the value of the house every year (half the original purchase price, spread over 27.5 years), as though it were being “used up” by being rented out — while in fact, it’s appreciating in value.
Depreciation, and the other deductible expenses more than offset the income that I receive from rent, and give me a much bigger tax refund than I would normally get.
Sure, it’s harder than filling out the 1040EZ, but if you can file online, it’s not so hard to figure out.