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7 expenses you can deduct if you work from home

Written by Valesca Wilms, Content Manager
Updated on
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Setting up your own home office is not only practical, it’s also interesting from a tax perspective. Here, we take a look at some of those expenses that are just waiting to be optimised.

Utility bills (e.g. water, gas, electricity)

You can deduct these expenses in proportion to the surface area allocated to your workspace at home. It doesn’t matter how often you work from home – whether it’s a little, a lot, or every single day, you can deduct the same amount!

For these kinds of expenses, as for all other business expenses, play it straight: if you’re unsure, make a floor plan of your home and check the space you actually devote to your office. The tax authorities generally allow you to deduct 15%. If, during a tax audit, there’s any doubt, they can of course ask to verify your claims on the spot. 🏠

A second computer screen, an ergonomic mouse…

… or a headset that lets you have conference calls without everyone hearing the other attendees? This kind of IT equipment is 75% VAT deductible and tax-deductible according to the proportion of professional use you declare.

Are you using the equipment exclusively for professional purposes? Then you can deduct 100% of the cost. In this case, you could have to prove that it’s exclusively for professional use during a tax audit: for example, by showing that you don’t use your computer to store your holiday photos, only to run software you need for your work. 💻

Insurance for your equipment

If you’ve invested in state-of-the-art IT equipment, you might as well insure it: here, for tax purposes, you can deduct the cost of the insurance in proportion to your professional use. There’s no VAT on insurance.

An important detail to keep in mind: the insurance must be taken out in your company’s name (or in your name if you’re an independant)!

Office furnishings (e.g. sofa, lamp, plants) 

All the furnishings that make your working environment more practical or more welcoming for your clients are deductible! This applies to decorative items in your office or waiting room, the fridge for your team, the flowers and green plants that welcome your customers or the reading light on your desk for late-night work sessions. These kinds of expenses are 100% deductible for both tax and VAT purposes.

Obviously, the sofa in your living room which is only for private use or the plants in your garden are not eligible. In short, if you take advantage of deductions like these, don’t overdo it.

A fair percentage of your internet connection

As an independant, you can deduct your internet connection in proportion to the amount of time you spend working from home, i.e. your professional use.

If you don’t rent an office and work only from home, you can deduct 5/7 of your bill, i.e. for the five working days of the week. The VAT can be deducted up to a maximum of 75%. So if you work three days a week at home, you can deduct 43% in tax and the VAT. The same goes for your telephone bill.

If you have your own company and have an internet contract in the name of your company, you automatically apply the maximum deductible amounts, with the VAT tolerance mentioned above.

Coffee, tea, fruit juice

These are also fully deductible, provided they contribute to the growth of your business. For example, you can invest in a Nespresso coffee machine or fine loose tea if this means you can better welcome your customers or if it helps you and your team concentrate. The same applies to snacks such as fruit in the workplace. 

However, the tea and coffee you have for breakfast, and the chocolate bars you eat while you work are obviously not allowed! ☕️

Music streaming platforms

Do you listen to Spotify, Soundcloud, Apple Music or another source of music to help you concentrate better? Or to eliminate the background noise in your home while you work?

Then deduct your subscription in proportion to how much you use it professionally! If you also use it during your non-working time, then make sure, as always, to accurately specify the professional use proportion.

This allows you to deduct the cost of a service that brings value to your company: your Netflix subscription for relaxing after work unfortunately doesn’t fall into this category.

These business expenses are an excellent way to optimise your taxes and control your costs. That’s why every time you upload an expense to Accountable, we give you a tax tip. Try it here!

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Valesca Wilms, Content Manager
Valesca Wilms, Content Manager

As a Content Manager at Accountable, Valesca offers her readers an exciting and engaging content experience. Given her own experience as a freelance content marketeer & copywriter, Valesca knows the ins and outs of tax returns for the self-employed. It’s her goal to provide you with easy and understandable solutions to handle your tax returns stress-free with Accountable.

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