Discussion:Home Office - Water?

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Discussion Forum Index --> Tax Questions --> Home Office - Water?


Rgtaxservice (talk|edits) said:

28 March 2007
My client insists that his water bill is a deductable utility expense. I tend to disagree. In a work-at-home office setting - water, to me at least, is akin to the exception that first telephone in the house is non-deductable. If water were an intregral part of business expenses, such as a dentist or doctor, I would agree.

Sec. 162 was of little help. It just mentions utilities in the pubs. Publication 587 makes mention of gas and electric, but does not specificly <sp> preclude water. It does specificly <sp> preclude the first phone.

Does anyone have any helpful comments or a section I can cite?

Tim - we need a spell checker. Is there also a way to do a word search in the IRS code in Reference Resources?

Www.cpa1.biz (talk|edits) said:

28 March 2007
I dont see anything wrong with writing a part of this off. This person drinks the water and uses for showers, etc. What makes you deduct the gas if you are asking about deducting the water? They are in the same boat.

Bengoshi (talk|edits) said:

28 March 2007
Rg, I tend to agree w/ you on the "office use" of water (although I'm not sure about the telephone analogy). I think you should ask whether use of water is common in the taxpayer's particular business. If it's ordinarily used in the business activity, for example, to prepare inventory or goods, I don't see much problem allocating a reasonable amount to business. Is water actually used for some business purpose (other than flushing after no. 2)?

PVVCPA (talk|edits) said:

March 28, 2007
LOL! Bengoshi. I wonder if an auditor ever argued that going #2 did not have a business purpose.

Vbcpa (talk|edits) said:

28 March 2007
Wow - it's getting deep in here - rg - deduct the water as an indirect cost ( part of running the entire home per the instructions on 8829 ) If you have clients come to your home running water is necessary - We pay for water at my office - why wouldn't I pay for water at my home office? Don't get bogged down in something that is going to be minimal when all is said and done. Take the expense.

Bengoshi (talk|edits) said:

28 March 2007
haha! Well, I guess use of water to flush has a greater chance of passing the smell test than using it for drinking.

Death&Taxes (talk|edits) said:

28 March 2007
What kind of money are we talking about? 10% of a $400 water bill? All utilities is how I see it, except that verboten first phone line, and any services on that which can be shown as itemized and used for business can be 100% deductible [e.g., long distance calls, voice mail]

JR1 (talk|edits) said:

March 28, 2007
Kinda hardnosed there RG? Don't you figure electric is needed for the house to turn on the lights to find the office? Water is a utility. So is sewer, hauling it away when you're done. Geeez.

Pegoo (talk|edits) said:

28 March 2007
Cleaning services as well :P If you hire maids to clean your house and the office to keep it tidy which affects your production (messy office = low productivity/mood).

Death&Taxes (talk|edits) said:

28 March 2007
Watch out for household employees if deducting cleaning.

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