I worked from home last year – what can I claim?

Updated: Apr 30

So, you worked from home during the 2022 financial year and are wondering what you can claim? This blog is here to help.

Firstly, to claim working from home expenses you must:

  • Be working from home to fulfil your employment duties and not just carrying out minimal tasks such as occasionally checking emails or taking calls; and

  • Incur additional expenses as a result of working from home

To claim a deduction for expenses you incur when working from home you need to:

  • use one of the methods set out below to calculate your deduction; and

  • keep records that show you incurred the expenses.

There are three different methods available for you to choose from:

  • Shortcut method (only available in the 2021 and 2022 financial years)

  • Fixed rate method

  • Actual cost method

Shortcut Method

This method is only temporary and can only be used in the 2020-2022 income years.

Who can use this method?

If you have a record of the number of hours you worked from home during the year.

What is the rate?

You can claim 80 cents per hour for each hour you work from home. What does this rate include?

  • Phone expenses

  • Internet expenses

  • The decline in value of equipment and furniture

  • Electricity and gas for heating, cooling and lighting

Can I claim other expenses for working from home?

No, even if you bought new equipment for your home office.

Fixed Rate Method

Who can use this method?

  • You must have a dedicated work area, such as a home office that you use when you work from home.

  • You must have records that show the work-related portion of expenses not covered by the fixed rate per hour.

  • You must have records of the number of hours spent working at home for the whole income year.

What is the rate?

The claim is a fixed rate of 52 cents for each hour you worked from home.

What does this rate include?

  • Decline in value of home office furniture

  • Electricity and gas for heating, cooling and lighting

  • Cleaning your home office

What can I claim in addition to this rate?

  • phone, data and internet expenses

  • computer consumables and stationery

  • decline in value of depreciating assets other than home office furniture and furnishings used for work purposes – for example, computers and laptops.

Actual Cost Method

Who can use this method?

You must have kept records which show the amount you spend on expenses, depreciating assets you buy and use while working from home and or work-related use for your expenses and depreciating assets

How does it work?

You can work out your deduction by calculating the actual expenses which may include the following expenses:

  • Decline in value of depreciating assets

  • Cleaning expenses

  • Heating, cooling and lighting

  • Phone and internet

  • Computer consumables and stationery

How do I calculate my ‘actual expenses’? If you have a designated home office, you can apportion the size of the office relevant to your total house size. For example, if your home office covers 15% of your home you can claim 15% of your heating, cooling and lighting charges.

For expenses such as phone and internet, you apportion the work-related component of these expenses. For example, if your internet charges for the year are $500 and your work-related % is 80%, you can claim $400 under this method.

What records do I need to keep?

  • You must record of the number of actual hours you work from home during the income year

  • Diary for a representative four-week period to show your usual pattern of working at home

One last FAQ

Can I claim occupancy expenses such as rent, mortgage interest, rates and house insurance?

Only if your home is your place of business and you have a designated home office area. Note that there are capital gains tax considerations in using your home to produce income and you should talk to us before considering this option.

If you have any questions about what you can claim, please visit https://www.ato.gov.au/Individuals/Income-and-deductions/Deductions-you-can-claim/Home-office-expenses/ or contact us.

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