I’m slogging through my taxes and I’m wondering if I qualify for the home office deduction. I’ve always passed on it because even setting aside whether my situation qualifies or not, the paperwork and calculations always seemed unreasonably onerous for the reward. I just learned however, that there is now a simplified rule which allows you to simply deduct $5 per square foot up to 300 square feet. This makes the deduction much more tempting.
But do I qualify? The deduction is aimed primarily at people who run their businesses out of their homes and I don’t; I am a salaried employee. Based on what I’ve been able to find; even as an employee, the deduction is still a possibility, but only if I am working from home as a convenience for my employer and not as a convenience for myself. In other words, if I’m working from home, just because I like it, I don’t qualify, but if I’m working from home because my employer doesn’t have any space for me, I do. That seems straight forward, though I’m not sure how it applies to my situation. I am a 100% remote worker for a very large software company. They have plenty of space available for me, though the nearest office is 200 miles away. So, it’s not clear to me for whose convenience I am working from home.
I can’t imagine that my situation is very unique, but I haven’t had much luck tracking down an answer. Are there any CPAs on the board who might opine here? (I’m also open to wild ass guesses from truckers or plumbers or whatever).