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  • Working from home

    If you work from home you may be able to claim a deduction for some of your expenses relating to the area you use.

    In general, the deductions you can claim depend on whether:

    • you have a work area – a room such as a study or spare room is set aside primarily or exclusively for work activities but your home isn't your principal place of business – for example, you may have an office elsewhere, but work at home after hours
    • you don't have a work area – your principal place of business is not at home, nor do you have an area or room primarily or exclusively set aside for work, but you do some work at home – for example, you might work for a few hours in the lounge room
    • your home is the principal place of business – a business is run from home and a room is set aside exclusively for business activities. If this is your situation, see Running your business from home.

    The following table set out the deductions you may be able to claim if your home is not your principal place of business.

    Deductions you may be able to claim

    You do have a work area

    You don't have a work area

    Cost of using a room's utilities such as gas and electricity

    Yes

    Yes

    Work-related phone costs

    Yes

    Yes

    Decline in value (depreciation) of office plant and equipment such as desks, chairs and computers

    Yes

    Yes

    Decline in value (depreciation) of curtains, carpets and light fittings

    Yes

    No

    Occupancy expenses such as rent, mortgage interest, insurance and rates

    No

    No

    Capital gains tax implications

    Irrespective of whether or not you have a work area set aside, if you own the home and are entitled to the main residence exemption from capital gains tax, this is not affected provided your home is not your principal place of business.

    See also:

    Last modified: 13 May 2015QC 23624