Monday, February 1, 2010

Home Improvement Tax Deduction: Bang for Buck Housing Relief.



1.  Homeowners are beleaguered with burdens of home ownership that undermine a policy fostering stability in neighborhoods through reasonable, affordable home ownership.

2.  Homeowners who had paid off their mortgages receive little benefit from their home ownership as to upkeep, unless they engage in certain covered "loans" in order to do it, thus incurring interest expense on top of the cost of the upkeep.


The following shall be added as a tax deduction to Schedule C, in order to make home ownership more affordable.

1.  Home "improvements" that constitute, as set forth herein, a Certified Improvement and which shall be a tax deduction from gross income, shall be defined as follows:

A financial outlay that produces substantially enhanced Performance Minus Hassle, for the Purpose Intended, over the prior Situation. 

2.  Definitions
  • Performance.  Measuring a Certified Improvement by the Performance Sans Hassle standard: This shall require that the purchaser requires fewer repairs, and incurs significantly reduced Losses of Property, Time and Agida, with the purchase and installation; as compared to the loss of property, time and agida with the previous installation.
  • Performance sans Hassle. This requires that the fuss and inconvenience of installation is substantially less than the increased performance provided by the new product.  If the home population is displaced more than three weeks, the inconvenience exceeds the benefit and no deduction shall be allowed.
  • Purpose Intended:  The purpose need only be met.  Updating does not qualify. For floors, the purpose is to walk upon, reasonably quietly, on a leak-proof surface, with minimal breakage if the champagne flute drops, and to clean up easily from mud, grit from careless spouses' soles, or when the vin rouge spilleth.
  • Prior Situation:  What you had before. Excluded from consideration herein shall be anything remotely connected with the concept of a style, a room, or appliance system, as "dated" or "needs updating" or the like. There is no such thing as "dated" in real world deductions, only ego.  Latitude is given for changes in color palate, but the deduction for mere color palate shall be 1/3 of its total cost of purchase and paintitude.

3.  Note that the deduction need not relate to matters that affect increase in home value based upon improvements of a capital nature (to be treated separately in the tax code); or sale-related significant replacement of appliances or other "updating", see below) that may add to home sale-ability.  See FN 1, attached hereto and incorporated herein by reference.

This deduction is offered and shall be interpreted broadly so as to encourage domicilers to do what they can with what they have, by affecting positively the tax return of the domiciler who makes nice improvements while domiciled therein.


FN 1 

Certified Improvements shall include:

1.  New linoleum over old linoleum; or other soft but durable flooring product which meets the Droppage test (the 6 oz jelly glass does not break if dropped from a height of 3 feet).

2.   Refinishing old cabinets and adding new cabinets, as Storage is always good.  Updating with new cabinets does not qualify.

3.  New formica over old formica.

4.  Repainting, fixing other boo-boos, making the place look good.

5.  Removal of all handles and knobs. Place looks better without them.

6.  Removal of all bands, borders, and old picture holes, scuffs above chair-rails, and the rebleach or recolor, of all grout including around the Seats of the House.

7.  Rewiring.

8.  Green-related expenditures like good windows, new furnace.  This deduction shall offer a benefit in addition to any government rebate for such, and is a permissible double dip.

9.  Repainting, upkeep, dryer duct crawling, grunge-removal, funk blasting.

10. Wood floors with basketball court weight "finish".

Certified Improvements shall not include:

1.  Purchase and installation of any stone product, including granite, on counters or floors in any area where Breakage may occur as a result of Droppage as defined in A1.

Thus, mudrooms with stoneware and tiling are acceptable;  kitchens, not.  The legislative committee is sick of shattered pyrex; and doesn't like the radiation clicks of granite.  The new buyer will diss the color of the granite, anyway.

2.  Taste-related expenditures; in particular no deduction shall apply for any tawny coloration applied to an interior room, walls, ceiling, woodwork. Tawny is so yesterday and turns mud on gray days.

3.  Wood floors with contractor-minimum un-finish

4.  Adding a second sink to the Necessary Room. Who's going to clean it, anyway? Him? No. You. Add a second bathroom instead somewhere.

5.  Remodeling to fit a shower for two; or tub with jets for elephants.  Use the chandelier instead.

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