Since I was working from home, I can claim the home office deduction on my tax return
Not so fast! Remember the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act that was passed a few years back? That law did away with a bunch of “miscellaneous itemized deductions” in exchange for a higher standard deduction. That means writing off the cost of setting up and maintaining a home office is off the table for most taxpayers.
Generally, the home office tax deduction is only available for self-employed individuals, freelancers or independent contractors who have a home office that is used exclusively for business purposes on a regular basis. That means office workers sent home by their employers during the pandemic don’t count, since they don’t work exclusively out of their home.
But that doesn’t mean you’re out of options! If you’ve had to spend some money on supplies that you needed to do your job from home, ask your employer if they’d be willing to reimburse you for those expenses.