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  1. I was approved in July 2014 for Social Security disability that covered all of 2013 and 2014. I received back pay for that same period, My question can I do amended tax return for 2013 so I can get a deduction for cashing out some of my 401k? I had taken money out of my 401K in 2013 and 2014 to live on. I turned 55 in May 2014 if that matters, I thought there was a deduction if you become disabled and you was approved for social security benefits and you had also taken out your 401k.

    1. Patty,
      If you paid the 10% penalty for early withdrawal from your 401K, you can get that penalty removed using the exception that you are totally and permanently disabled. You would need to file an amended return for that. There is no deduction for cashing out a 401K due to disability.
      You will be reporting the social security disability back payments you received in 2014 for 2013 on your 2014 tax return.

    1. Don,
      If the new system was installed in 2014, there is no credit available. It expired at the end of 2013. If you installed it in 2013, you will need the Manufacturer Certification Statement (look online for the statement about your exact system.

      Mary Ellen

    1. Debbie,

      There are no deductions or credits allowed for this type of work if it is done in your personal residence. You will be able to add the expense to the basis of the house for determining gain or loss when you sell the house.

      Mary Ellen

    1. Hi Tim,
      It is only deductible if it is your rental property. If it is your main residence then keep track of your costs. When you sell your home you add the cost of your remodel to your purchase price which will reduce any gain you have.
      Thank you,
      Lisa Greene-Lewis

    1. Hi,
      Not unless it was for a rental property. You can not deduct it for your main residence.
      Thank you,
      Lisa Greene-Lewis

  2. I fell at work earlier this year and collected Workman’s Comp. Is this taxable at the federal or state (NJ) level?

  3. I live in a 1973 double-wide mobile home and will be replacing all the leaky single pane windows with double panes which is all that is necessary in Sacramento Valley, CA. Can I get a partial write-off?

    1. Hi Lyn,

      The energy credit for windows expired on 12/31/13, so windows purchased in 2014 will not qualify.

      Mary Ellen

  4. We just put a new sliding glass door and a new backdoor in our home this summer, also a new kitchen floor. Are these tax deductible? Also my husband took some cash from his IRA account we saved some of it to pay the Maine state tax on it, do you know what the percentage is for the state of Maine?

    1. Hi Deb,

      The energy credit for doors expired on 1231/13 so 2014 purchases will not qualify for the credit.

      Main taxes can be as high as 7.95%, based on your income and filing status (married filing joint vs single.

      Mary Ellen

    1. Hi Jonathan,
      Only if you incurred a gardening bill on your rental property. Not your principal residence.
      Thank you,
      Lisa Greene-Lewis

  5. I am buying a rental home. I have several repairs to be made to the home due to the age. New roof, plumbing, windows, etc… Can I use these as a tax deduction next year?

    1. Hi Lynn,
      Only if this cost was for a rental property and not your principal residence. Keep your receipt though, because if you sell your home this cost can be added to the purchase price of your home lowering the gain on the sell of your home.
      Thank you,
      Lisa Greene-Lewis

  6. Hi All,
    All of you with new Roofs, Foundation work etc, any deductions that could have been available in the past for better insulation work are gone. But Please keep track of the expenses directly related to the repair replacement of the home. They increase your costs, (even items done multiple times, 2 or 3 roofs, etc.) when you sell your home.
    If the home is a rental or used for a business, (is the location where business/ customers would transact business then it is deductible on the appropriate forms. TurboTax, Premium is an excellent software to use for this type of return.
    Former tax Consultant.

    1. We’ve just replaced our garage door, completed the basement, painted outside trim, and replaced the roof. Is any of that deductible?

      1. Hi Ellina,
        Only if these improvements were done on a rental property and not your main residence. Keep your receipts though. If you sell your home these expenses should be added to the cost of your home and will reduce any gain.
        Thank you,
        Lisa Greene-Lewis

  7. We are planning on buying a home closer to our workplace and with more land and vehicle storage. The current home will then be sold, likely at a loss for us. The distance is not more than 50 miles, so I know we can’t deduct the moving expenses. However, what about the loss we expect to take to sell our current home?

    1. vbw2014,

      The loss from selling your residence is not deductible. It is considered a personal expense.

      Mary Ellen

  8. We are adding a room on to our existing house to install a wood stove. Is any of the new construction or the wood stove deductible?

    1. Diane,

      You may qualify to deduct the sales tax on the materials for building the new room. And all the expense (that you don’t deduct elsewhere) will increase the basis in your house, decreasing the potential gain when you sell your home.

      Mary Ellen

      1. Do I need to report the cost at the same year I spend? For example, I build an extra room this year. Non of the cost is used to deduct the sales tax and I did not report the cost. When I sell my house two years later, can I show the receipt to decrease the gain?

  9. Why donate when the deduction rate is so high. I have income of 25000 interest on house of 8000 medical of 1500 and with donations of over 1000 and still do not meet the requirements

  10. We have added radiant heat barrier, and extra blown in insulation and attic vents this year, is that tax deductible?

    1. Hi Ashlie,
      The credit for insulation expired December 21, 2013. Solar energy systems, geothermal heat pumps, and wind turbines qualify for the energy credit.
      Thank you,
      Lisa Greene-Lewis

      1. Hi Carol,
        Please listen again. I say interest. I wish insurance was deductible;D
        Thank you,
        Lisa Greene-Lewis

      2. Hi Josh,
        I say interest even though I wish insurance was deductible as well.
        Thank you,
        Lisa Greene-Lewis

      3. Hi Tony,
        I definitely say interest even though I wish insurance was deductible as well.
        Thank you,
        Lisa Greene-Lewis

    1. Stella PMI is deductible, it is a separate line item on Schedule A in Interest section I believe. Tax Software should ask you the amount. ONLY PMI not homeowners.
      Former Tax Consultant

  11. Would I be able to claim putting in a French drain and cementing the back yard,due to water flooding problem?

  12. This summer I will be spending about $23000.00 on foundation work om my house. Will I be able to deduct any of the money on my tax form.

    1. Hi Jimmy,
      Unfortunately the tax credit for heating and air conditioning expired December 31, 2013. You can still receive a tax credit for solar energy systems, geothermal heat pumps and wind turbines.
      Thank you,
      Lisa Greene-Lewis

    1. Hi Monet,
      Unfortunately, you would only be able to take that deduction if the renovations were done on a rental property. If they are done on your main home the costs of renovation would be added to the cost of your home when you purchased which will lower your gain when you sell your main home.
      Thank you,
      Lisa Greene-Lewis

    1. Susie,
      Moving expenses can be deductible. The first test is if you moved due to a job change. If no, then you cannot take a deduction for moving expenses. If yes, then you calculate the miles from your old residence to your old job and your old residence to your new job. If the difference between the two is 50 miles or greater, you can deduct moving expenses. You can deduct packing supplies, transporting household goods and personal items, utility deposits or disconnect fees, shipping cars and or pets, storage, lodging during the move (not meals), transportation expense if not by car, car mileage at $0.24 per mile. You would need to deduct any reimbursement from your current employer for those expenses.

      There are other requirements for deducting moving expenses. All the details can be found in IRS publication 521 (, and TurboTax will have all the right questions and details for you when you prepare your tax return.
      Thank you,

      Mary Elen

      1. Our landlord charged us a fee for breaking our lease early, with his permission.
        It was no where in the contract that he would do this….but can we deduct that $1200??

        We moved out of state for a new job.

      2. Hi Heather,
        Unfortunately the IRS does not recognize the cost of breaking a lease as deductible.
        Thank you,
        Lisa Greene-Lewis

  13. I installed 3 two Ton Geothermal Split Heat Pumps 2 stage Compressors with variable speed blowers. Total installed price is $41,869. They qualify for a 30 % Tax Credit. My question is since I was paying my taxes Qtrly to the Gov. do I need to pay Qtrly if I have enough credits to cover my yearly taxes.

  14. Hi Cathy,
    If you get a home equity loan secured by your first (main) home loan then you would be able to deduct the interest paid on the loan used to build your second home. Don’t forget you would also be able to deduct property taxes on your second home.
    Thank you,
    Lisa Greene-Lewis

  15. How about raising funds with a HELOC first mortgage on your first home to build a second home ? Will the interest be completely tax deductible ??

      1. Hi Marixsa,
        Two new insulated screen doors would only be a deduction if this was for a rental property and not your main home. If the expense is for your main home keep your receipts. If you sell your main home add the cost to your purchase price reducing gain on the sell of your home.
        Thank you,
        Lisa Greene-Lewis

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