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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.

    If you are in business and your home is also your principal place of business, you should refer to running your business from home.

    For employees working from home due COVID-19, we have specific information available about home office expenses and recording keeping.

    On this page:

    Conditions of working from home

    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.

    If you are only working from home due to COVID-19, refer to – Employees working 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 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



    Work-related phone costs



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



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



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



    For more information about the expenses you can claim and record keeping requirements, see Home office expenses.

    Capital gains tax implications

    In most cases, if you are working from home as an employee, regardless of whether or not you have separate work area, there will be no capital gains tax (CGT) implications for your home. This is the case even if you claim home office expenses.

    CGT may apply if you are running a business from home or you claim occupancy expenses (like mortgage interest repayments or rates).

    If you do claim occupancy expenses, you don‘t get the full main residence CGT exemption, although you may be entitled to a partial exemption.

    See also:

    Last modified: 08 Apr 2020QC 23624