Publication 936 - Main Content


Part I. Home Mortgage Interest

This part explains what you can deduct as home mortgage interest. It includes discussions on points, mortgage insurance premiums, and how to report deductible interest on your tax return.

Generally, home mortgage interest is any interest you pay on a loan secured by your home (main home or a second home). The loan may be a mortgage to buy your home, a second mortgage, a line of credit, or a home equity loan.

You can deduct home mortgage interest if all the following conditions are met.

  • You file Form 1040 and itemize deductions on Schedule A (Form 1040).

  • The mortgage is a secured debt on a qualified home in which you have an ownership interest. Secured Debt and Qualified Home are explained later.

 
Both you and the lender must intend that the loan be repaid.

Fully deductible interest.   In most cases, you can deduct all of your home mortgage interest. How much you can deduct depends on the date of the mortgage, the amount of the mortgage, and how you use the mortgage proceeds.

  If all of your mortgages fit into one or more of the following three categories at all times during the year, you can deduct all of the interest on those mortgages. (If any one mortgage fits into more than one category, add the debt that fits in each category to your other debt in the same category.) If one or more of your mortgages does not fit into any of these categories, use Part II of this publication to figure the amount of interest you can deduct.

  The three categories are as follows.
  1. Mortgages you took out on or before October 13, 1987 (called grandfathered debt).

  2. Mortgages you took out after October 13, 1987, to buy, build, or improve your home (called home acquisition debt), but only if throughout 2013 these mortgages plus any grandfathered debt totaled $1 million or less ($500,000 or less if married filing separately).

  3. Mortgages you took out after October 13, 1987, other than to buy, build, or improve your home (called home equity debt), but only if throughout 2013 these mortgages totaled $100,000 or less ($50,000 or less if married filing separately) and totaled no more than the fair market value of your home reduced by (1) and (2).

The dollar limits for the second and third categories apply to the combined mortgages on your main home and second home.

  See Part II for more detailed definitions of grandfathered, home acquisition, and home equity debt.

   You can use Figure A to check whether your home mortgage interest is fully deductible.

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Figure A. Is My Home Mortgage Interest Fully Deductible?

Secured Debt

You can deduct your home mortgage interest only if your mortgage is a secured debt. A secured debt is one in which you sign an instrument (such as a mortgage, deed of trust, or land contract) that:

  • Makes your ownership in a qualified home security for payment of the debt,

  • Provides, in case of default, that your home could satisfy the debt, and

  • Is recorded or is otherwise perfected under any state or local law that applies.

In other words, your mortgage is a secured debt if you put your home up as collateral to protect the interests of the lender. If you cannot pay the debt, your home can then serve as payment to the lender to satisfy (pay) the debt. In this publication, mortgage will refer to secured debt.

Debt not secured by home.   A debt is not secured by your home if it is secured solely because of a lien on your general assets or if it is a security interest that attaches to the property without your consent (such as a mechanic's lien or judgment lien).

  A debt is not secured by your home if it once was, but is no longer secured by your home.

Wraparound mortgage.   This is not a secured debt unless it is recorded or otherwise perfected under state law.

Example.

Beth owns a home subject to a mortgage of $40,000. She sells the home for $100,000 to John, who takes it subject to the $40,000 mortgage. Beth continues to make the payments on the $40,000 note. John pays $10,000 down and gives Beth a $90,000 note secured by a wraparound mortgage on the home. Beth does not record or otherwise perfect the $90,000 mortgage under the state law that applies. Therefore, the mortgage is not a secured debt and John cannot deduct any of the interest he pays on it as home mortgage interest.

Choice to treat the debt as not secured by your home.   You can choose to treat any debt secured by your qualified home as not secured by the home. This treatment begins with the tax year for which you make the choice and continues for all later tax years. You can revoke your choice only with the consent of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

  You may want to treat a debt as not secured by your home if the interest on that debt is fully deductible (for example, as a business expense) whether or not it qualifies as home mortgage interest. This may allow you, if the limits in Part II apply, more of a deduction for interest on other debts that are deductible only as home mortgage interest.

Cooperative apartment owner.   If you own stock in a cooperative housing corporation, see the Special Rule for Tenant-Stockholders in Cooperative Housing Corporations , near the end of this Part I.

Qualified Home

For you to take a home mortgage interest deduction, your debt must be secured by a qualified home. This means your main home or your second home. A home includes a house, condominium, cooperative, mobile home, house trailer, boat, or similar property that has sleeping, cooking, and toilet facilities.

The interest you pay on a mortgage on a home other than your main or second home may be deductible if the proceeds of the loan were used for business, investment, or other deductible purposes. Otherwise, it is considered personal interest and is not deductible.

Main home.   You can have only one main home at any one time. This is the home where you ordinarily live most of the time.

Second home.   A second home is a home that you choose to treat as your second home.

Second home not rented out.   If you have a second home that you do not hold out for rent or resale to others at any time during the year, you can treat it as a qualified home. You do not have to use the home during the year.

Second home rented out.   If you have a second home and rent it out part of the year, you also must use it as a home during the year for it to be a qualified home. You must use this home more than 14 days or more than 10% of the number of days during the year that the home is rented at a fair rental, whichever is longer. If you do not use the home long enough, it is considered rental property and not a second home. For information on residential rental property, see Publication 527.

More than one second home.   If you have more than one second home, you can treat only one as the qualified second home during any year. However, you can change the home you treat as a second home during the year in the following situations.
  • If you get a new home during the year, you can choose to treat the new home as your second home as of the day you buy it.

  • If your main home no longer qualifies as your main home, you can choose to treat it as your second home as of the day you stop using it as your main home.

  • If your second home is sold during the year or becomes your main home, you can choose a new second home as of the day you sell the old one or begin using it as your main home.

Divided use of your home.   The only part of your home that is considered a qualified home is the part you use for residential living. If you use part of your home for other than residential living, such as a home office, you must allocate the use of your home. You must then divide both the cost and fair market value of your home between the part that is a qualified home and the part that is not. Dividing the cost may affect the amount of your home acquisition debt, which is limited to the cost of your home plus the cost of any improvements. (See Home Acquisition Debt in Part II.) Dividing the fair market value may affect your home equity debt limit, also explained in Part II .

Renting out part of home.   If you rent out part of a qualified home to another person (tenant), you can treat the rented part as being used by you for residential living only if all of the following conditions apply.
  • The rented part of your home is used by the tenant primarily for residential living.

  • The rented part of your home is not a self-contained residential unit having separate sleeping, cooking, and toilet facilities.

  • You do not rent (directly or by sublease) the same or different parts of your home to more than two tenants at any time during the tax year. If two persons (and dependents of either) share the same sleeping quarters, they are treated as one tenant.

Office in home.   If you have an office in your home that you use in your business, see Publication 587, Business Use of Your Home. It explains how to figure your deduction for the business use of your home, which includes the business part of your home mortgage interest.

Home under construction.   You can treat a home under construction as a qualified home for a period of up to 24 months, but only if it becomes your qualified home at the time it is ready for occupancy.

  The 24-month period can start any time on or after the day construction begins.

Home destroyed.   You may be able to continue treating your home as a qualified home even after it is destroyed in a fire, storm, tornado, earthquake, or other casualty. This means you can continue to deduct the interest you pay on your home mortgage, subject to the limits described in this publication.

  You can continue treating a destroyed home as a qualified home if, within a reasonable period of time after the home is destroyed, you:
  • Rebuild the destroyed home and move into it, or

  • Sell the land on which the home was located.

  This rule applies to your main home and to a second home that you treat as a qualified home.

Time-sharing arrangements.   You can treat a home you own under a time-sharing plan as a qualified home if it meets all the requirements. A time-sharing plan is an arrangement between two or more people that limits each person's interest in the home or right to use it to a certain part of the year.

Rental of time-share.   If you rent out your time-share, it qualifies as a second home only if you also use it as a home during the year. See Second home rented out , earlier, for the use requirement. To know whether you meet that requirement, count your days of use and rental of the home only during the time you have a right to use it or to receive any benefits from the rental of it.

Married taxpayers.   If you are married and file a joint return, your qualified home(s) can be owned either jointly or by only one spouse.

Separate returns.   If you are married filing separately and you and your spouse own more than one home, you can each take into account only one home as a qualified home. However, if you both consent in writing, then one spouse can take both the main home and a second home into account.

Special Situations

This section describes certain items that can be included as home mortgage interest and others that cannot. It also describes certain special situations that may affect your deduction.

Late payment charge on mortgage payment.   You can deduct as home mortgage interest a late payment charge if it was not for a specific service performed in connection with your mortgage loan.

Mortgage prepayment penalty.   If you pay off your home mortgage early, you may have to pay a penalty. You can deduct that penalty as home mortgage interest provided the penalty is not for a specific service performed or cost incurred in connection with your mortgage loan.

Sale of home.   If you sell your home, you can deduct your home mortgage interest (subject to any limits that apply) paid up to, but not including, the date of the sale.

Example.

John and Peggy Harris sold their home on May 7. Through April 30, they made home mortgage interest payments of $1,220. The settlement sheet for the sale of the home showed $50 interest for the 6-day period in May up to, but not including, the date of sale. Their mortgage interest deduction is $1,270 ($1,220 + $50).

Prepaid interest.   If you pay interest in advance for a period that goes beyond the end of the tax year, you must spread this interest over the tax years to which it applies. You can deduct in each year only the interest that qualifies as home mortgage interest for that year. However, there is an exception that applies to points, discussed later.

Mortgage interest credit.    You may be able to claim a mortgage interest credit if you were issued a mortgage credit certificate (MCC) by a state or local government. Figure the credit on Form 8396, Mortgage Interest Credit. If you take this credit, you must reduce your mortgage interest deduction by the amount of the credit.

  See Form 8396 and Publication 530 for more information on the mortgage interest credit.

Ministers' and military housing allowance.   If you are a minister or a member of the uniformed services and receive a housing allowance that is not taxable, you can still deduct your home mortgage interest.

Hardest Hit Fund and Emergency Homeowners' Loan Programs.   You can use a special method to compute your deduction for mortgage interest and real estate taxes on your main home if you meet the following two conditions.
  1. You received assistance under:

    1. A State Housing Finance Agency (State HFA) Hardest Hit Fund program in which program payments could be used to pay mortgage interest, or

    2. An Emergency Homeowners' Loan Program administered by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) or a state.

  2. You meet the rules to deduct all of the mortgage interest on your loan and all of the real estate taxes on your main home.

If you meet these tests, then you can deduct all of the payments you actually made during the year to your mortgage servicer, the State HFA, or HUD on the home mortgage (including the amount shown on box 3 of Form 1098–MA, Mortgage Assistance Payments), but not more than the sum of the amounts shown on Form 1098, Mortgage Interest Statement, in box 1 (mortgage interest received from payer(s) / borrower(s)), box 4 (mortgage insurance premiums), and box 5 (other information including real property taxes paid). However, you are not required to use this special method to compute your deduction for mortgage interest and real estate taxes on your main home.

Mortgage assistance payments under section 235 of the National Housing Act.   If you qualify for mortgage assistance payments for lower-income families under section 235 of the National Housing Act, part or all of the interest on your mortgage may be paid for you. You cannot deduct the interest that is paid for you.

No other effect on taxes.   Do not include these mortgage assistance payments in your income. Also, do not use these payments to reduce other deductions, such as real estate taxes.

Divorced or separated individuals.   If a divorce or separation agreement requires you or your spouse or former spouse to pay home mortgage interest on a home owned by both of you, the payment of interest may be alimony. See the discussion of Payments for jointly-owned home under Alimony in Publication 504, Divorced or Separated Individuals.

Redeemable ground rents.   In some states (such as Maryland), you can buy your home subject to a ground rent. A ground rent is an obligation you assume to pay a fixed amount per year on the property. Under this arrangement, you are leasing (rather than buying) the land on which your home is located.

  If you make annual or periodic rental payments on a redeemable ground rent, you can deduct them as mortgage interest.

  A ground rent is a redeemable ground rent if all of the following are true.
  • Your lease, including renewal periods, is for more than 15 years.

  • You can freely assign the lease.

  • You have a present or future right (under state or local law) to end the lease and buy the lessor's entire interest in the land by paying a specific amount.

  • The lessor's interest in the land is primarily a security interest to protect the rental payments to which he or she is entitled.

  Payments made to end the lease and to buy the lessor's entire interest in the land are not deductible as mortgage interest.

Nonredeemable ground rents.   Payments on a nonredeemable ground rent are not mortgage interest. You can deduct them as rent if they are a business expense or if they are for rental property.

Reverse mortgages.   A reverse mortgage is a loan where the lender pays you (in a lump sum, a monthly advance, a line of credit, or a combination of all three) while you continue to live in your home. With a reverse mortgage, you retain title to your home. Depending on the plan, your reverse mortgage becomes due with interest when you move, sell your home, reach the end of a pre-selected loan period, or die. Because reverse mortgages are considered loan advances and not income, the amount you receive is not taxable. Any interest (including original issue discount) accrued on a reverse mortgage is not deductible until you actually pay it, which is usually when you pay off the loan in full. Your deduction may be limited because a reverse mortgage loan generally is subject to the limit on Home Equity Debt discussed in Part II.

Rental payments.   If you live in a house before final settlement on the purchase, any payments you make for that period are rent and not interest. This is true even if the settlement papers call them interest. You cannot deduct these payments as home mortgage interest.

Mortgage proceeds invested in tax-exempt securities.   You cannot deduct the home mortgage interest on grandfathered debt or home equity debt if you used the proceeds of the mortgage to buy securities or certificates that produce tax-free income. “Grandfathered debt” and “home equity debt” are defined in Part II of this publication.

Refunds of interest.   If you receive a refund of interest in the same tax year you paid it, you must reduce your interest expense by the amount refunded to you. If you receive a refund of interest you deducted in an earlier year, you generally must include the refund in income in the year you receive it. However, you need to include it only up to the amount of the deduction that reduced your tax in the earlier year. This is true whether the interest overcharge was refunded to you or was used to reduce the outstanding principal on your mortgage. If you need to include the refund in income, report it on Form 1040, line 21.

  If you received a refund of interest you overpaid in an earlier year, you generally will receive a Form 1098, Mortgage Interest Statement, showing the refund in box 3. For information about Form 1098, see Form 1098, Mortgage Interest Statement , later.

  For more information on how to treat refunds of interest deducted in earlier years, see Recoveries in Publication 525, Taxable and Nontaxable Income.

Cooperative apartment owner.   If you own a cooperative apartment, you must reduce your home mortgage interest deduction by your share of any cash portion of a patronage dividend that the cooperative receives. The patronage dividend is a partial refund to the cooperative housing corporation of mortgage interest it paid in a prior year.

  If you receive a Form 1098 from the cooperative housing corporation, the form should show only the amount you can deduct.

Points

The term “points” is used to describe certain charges paid, or treated as paid, by a borrower to obtain a home mortgage. Points may also be called loan origination fees, maximum loan charges, loan discount, or discount points.

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Figure B. Are My Points Fully Deductible This Year?

A borrower is treated as paying any points that a home seller pays for the borrower's mortgage. See Points paid by the seller , later.

General Rule

You generally cannot deduct the full amount of points in the year paid. Because they are prepaid interest, you generally deduct them ratably over the life (term) of the mortgage. See Deduction Allowed Ratably , next.

For exceptions to the general rule, see Deduction Allowed in Year Paid , later.

Deduction Allowed Ratably

If you do not meet the tests listed under Deduction Allowed in Year Paid , later, the loan is not a home improvement loan, or you choose not to deduct your points in full in the year paid, you can deduct the points ratably (equally) over the life of the loan if you meet all the following tests.

  1. You use the cash method of accounting. This means you report income in the year you receive it and deduct expenses in the year you pay them. Most individuals use this method.

  2. Your loan is secured by a home. (The home does not need to be your main home.)

  3. Your loan period is not more than 30 years.

  4. If your loan period is more than 10 years, the terms of your loan are the same as other loans offered in your area for the same or longer period.

  5. Either your loan amount is $250,000 or less, or the number of points is not more than:

    1. 4, if your loan period is 15 years or less, or

    2. 6, if your loan period is more than 15 years.

Example.

You use the cash method of accounting. In 2013, you took out a $100,000 loan payable over 20 years. The terms of the loan are the same as for other 20-year loans offered in your area. You paid $4,800 in points. You made 3 monthly payments on the loan in 2013. You can deduct $60 [($4,800 ÷ 240 months) x 3 payments] in 2013. In 2014, if you make all twelve payments, you will be able to deduct $240 ($20 x 12).

Deduction Allowed in Year Paid

You can fully deduct points in the year paid if you meet all the following tests. (You can use Figure B as a quick guide to see whether your points are fully deductible in the year paid.)

  1. Your loan is secured by your main home. (Your main home is the one you ordinarily live in most of the time.)

  2. Paying points is an established business practice in the area where the loan was made.

  3. The points paid were not more than the points generally charged in that area.

  4. You use the cash method of accounting. This means you report income in the year you receive it and deduct expenses in the year you pay them. Most individuals use this method.

  5. The points were not paid in place of amounts that ordinarily are stated separately on the settlement statement, such as appraisal fees, inspection fees, title fees, attorney fees, and property taxes.

  6. The funds you provided at or before closing, plus any points the seller paid, were at least as much as the points charged. The funds you provided are not required to have been applied to the points. They can include a down payment, an escrow deposit, earnest money, and other funds you paid at or before closing for any purpose. You cannot have borrowed these funds from your lender or mortgage broker.

  7. You use your loan to buy or build your main home.

  8. The points were computed as a percentage of the principal amount of the mortgage.

  9. The amount is clearly shown on the settlement statement (such as the Settlement Statement, Form HUD-1) as points charged for the mortgage. The points may be shown as paid from either your funds or the seller's.

Note.

If you meet all of these tests, you can choose to either fully deduct the points in the year paid, or deduct them over the life of the loan.

Home improvement loan.   You can also fully deduct in the year paid points paid on a loan to improve your main home, if tests (1) through (6) are met.

Second home. You cannot fully deduct in the year paid points you pay on loans secured by your second home. You can deduct these points only over the life of the loan.

Refinancing.   Generally, points you pay to refinance a mortgage are not deductible in full in the year you pay them. This is true even if the new mortgage is secured by your main home.

  However, if you use part of the refinanced mortgage proceeds to improve your main home and you meet the first 6 tests listed under Deduction Allowed in Year Paid , you can fully deduct the part of the points related to the improvement in the year you paid them with your own funds. You can deduct the rest of the points over the life of the loan.

Example 1.

In 1998, Bill Fields got a mortgage to buy a home. In 2013, Bill refinanced that mortgage with a 15-year $100,000 mortgage loan. The mortgage is secured by his home. To get the new loan, he had to pay three points ($3,000). Two points ($2,000) were for prepaid interest, and one point ($1,000) was charged for services, in place of amounts that ordinarily are stated separately on the settlement statement. Bill paid the points out of his private funds, rather than out of the proceeds of the new loan. The payment of points is an established practice in the area, and the points charged are not more than the amount generally charged there. Bill's first payment on the new loan was due July 1. He made six payments on the loan in 2013 and is a cash basis taxpayer.

Bill used the funds from the new mortgage to repay his existing mortgage. Although the new mortgage loan was for Bill's continued ownership of his main home, it was not for the purchase or improvement of that home. He cannot deduct all of the points in 2013. He can deduct two points ($2,000) ratably over the life of the loan. He deducts $67 [($2,000 ÷ 180 months) × 6 payments] of the points in 2013. The other point ($1,000) was a fee for services and is not deductible.

Example 2.

The facts are the same as in Example 1, except that Bill used $25,000 of the loan proceeds to improve his home and $75,000 to repay his existing mortgage. Bill deducts 25% ($25,000 ÷ $100,000) of the points ($2,000) in 2013. His deduction is $500 ($2,000 × 25%).

Bill also deducts the ratable part of the remaining $1,500 ($2,000 − $500) that must be spread over the life of the loan. This is $50 [($1,500 ÷ 180 months) × 6 payments] in 2013. The total amount Bill deducts in 2013 is $550 ($500 + $50).

Special Situations

This section describes certain special situations that may affect your deduction of points.

Original issue discount.   If you do not qualify to either deduct the points in the year paid or deduct them ratably over the life of the loan, or if you choose not to use either of these methods, the points reduce the issue price of the loan. This reduction results in original issue discount, which is discussed in chapter 4 of Publication 535.

Amounts charged for services.    Amounts charged by the lender for specific services connected to the loan are not interest. Examples of these charges are:
  • Appraisal fees,

  • Notary fees, and

  • Preparation costs for the mortgage note or deed of trust.

 
You cannot deduct these amounts as points either in the year paid or over the life of the mortgage.

Points paid by the seller.   The term “points” includes loan placement fees that the seller pays to the lender to arrange financing for the buyer.

Treatment by seller.   The seller cannot deduct these fees as interest. But they are a selling expense that reduces the amount realized by the seller. See Publication 523 for information on selling your home.

Treatment by buyer.   The buyer reduces the basis of the home by the amount of the seller-paid points and treats the points as if he or she had paid them. If all the tests under Deduction Allowed in Year Paid , earlier, are met, the buyer can deduct the points in the year paid. If any of those tests are not met, the buyer deducts the points over the life of the loan.

  If you need information about the basis of your home, see Publication 523 or Publication 530.

Funds provided are less than points.   If you meet all the tests in Deduction Allowed in Year Paid , earlier, except that the funds you provided were less than the points charged to you (test (6)), you can deduct the points in the year paid, up to the amount of funds you provided. In addition, you can deduct any points paid by the seller.

Example 1.

When you took out a $100,000 mortgage loan to buy your home in December, you were charged one point ($1,000). You meet all the tests for deducting points in the year paid, except the only funds you provided were a $750 down payment. Of the $1,000 charged for points, you can deduct $750 in the year paid. You spread the remaining $250 over the life of the mortgage.

Example 2.

The facts are the same as in Example 1, except that the person who sold you your home also paid one point ($1,000) to help you get your mortgage. In the year paid, you can deduct $1,750 ($750 of the amount you were charged plus the $1,000 paid by the seller). You spread the remaining $250 over the life of the mortgage. You must reduce the basis of your home by the $1,000 paid by the seller.

Excess points.   If you meet all the tests in Deduction Allowed in Year Paid , earlier, except that the points paid were more than generally paid in your area (test (3)), you deduct in the year paid only the points that are generally charged. You must spread any additional points over the life of the mortgage.

Mortgage ending early.   If you spread your deduction for points over the life of the mortgage, you can deduct any remaining balance in the year the mortgage ends. However, if you refinance the mortgage with the same lender, you cannot deduct any remaining balance of spread points. Instead, deduct the remaining balance over the term of the new loan.

  A mortgage may end early due to a prepayment, refinancing, foreclosure, or similar event.

Example.

Dan paid $3,000 in points in 2002 that he had to spread out over the 15-year life of the mortgage. He deducts $200 points per year. Through 2012, Dan has deducted $2,200 of the points.

Dan prepaid his mortgage in full in 2013. He can deduct the remaining $800 of points in 2013.

Limits on deduction.   You cannot fully deduct points paid on a mortgage that exceeds the limits discussed in Part II . See the Table 1 Instructions for line 10.

Form 1098.    The mortgage interest statement you receive should show not only the total interest paid during the year, but also your deductible points paid during the year. See Form 1098, Mortgage Interest Statement , later.

Mortgage Insurance Premiums

You can treat amounts you paid during 2013 for qualified mortgage insurance as home mortgage interest. The insurance must be in connection with home acquisition debt, and the insurance contract must have been issued after 2006.

Qualified mortgage insurance.   Qualified mortgage insurance is mortgage insurance provided by the Department of Veterans Affairs, the Federal Housing Administration, or the Rural Housing Service, and private mortgage insurance (as defined in section 2 of the Homeowners Protection Act of 1998 as in effect on December 20, 2006).

  Mortgage insurance provided by the Department of Veterans Affairs is commonly known as a funding fee. If provided by the Rural Housing Service, it is commonly known as a guarantee fee. The funding fee and guarantee fee can either be included in the amount of the loan or paid in full at the time of closing. These fees can be deducted fully in 2013 if the mortgage insurance contract was issued in 2013. Contact the mortgage insurance issuer to determine the deductible amount if it is not reported in box 4 of Form 1098.

Special rules for prepaid mortgage insurance.   Generally, if you paid premiums for qualified mortgage insurance that are properly allocable to periods after the close of the tax year, such premiums are treated as paid in the period to which they are allocated. You must allocate the premiums over the shorter of the stated term of the mortgage or 84 months, beginning with the month the insurance was obtained. No deduction is allowed for the unamortized balance if the mortgage is satisfied before its term. This paragraph does not apply to qualified mortgage insurance provided by the Department of Veterans Affairs or the Rural Housing Service.

Example.

Ryan purchased a home in May of 2012 and financed the home with a 15-year mortgage. Ryan also prepaid all of the $9,240 in private mortgage insurance required at the time of closing in May. Since the $9,240 in private mortgage insurance is allocable to periods after 2012, Ryan must allocate the $9,240 over the shorter of the life of the mortgage or 84 months. Ryan's adjusted gross income (AGI) for 2012 is $76,000. Ryan can deduct $880 ($9,240 ÷ 84 x 8 months) for qualified mortgage insurance premiums in 2012. For 2013, Ryan can deduct $1,320 ($9,240 ÷ 84 x 12 months) if his AGI is $100,000 or less.

In this example, the mortgage insurance premiums are allocated over 84 months, which is shorter than the life of the mortgage of 15 years (180 months).

Limit on deduction.   If your adjusted gross income on Form 1040, line 38, is more than $100,000 ($50,000 if your filing status is married filing separately), the amount of your mortgage insurance premiums that are otherwise deductible is reduced and may be eliminated. See Line 13 in the instructions for Schedule A (Form 1040) and complete the Mortgage Insurance Premiums Deduction Worksheet to figure the amount you can deduct. If your adjusted gross income is more than $109,000 ($54,500 if married filing separately), you cannot deduct your mortgage insurance premiums.

Form 1098.   The mortgage interest statement you receive should show not only the total interest paid during the year, but also your mortgage insurance premiums paid during the year, which may qualify to be treated as deductible mortgage interest. See Form 1098, Mortgage Interest Statement, next.

Form 1098, Mortgage Interest Statement

If you paid $600 or more of mortgage interest (including certain points and mortgage insurance premiums) during the year on any one mortgage, you generally will receive a Form 1098 or a similar statement from the mortgage holder. You will receive the statement if you pay interest to a person (including a financial institution or cooperative housing corporation) in the course of that person's trade or business. A governmental unit is a person for purposes of furnishing the statement.

The statement for each year should be sent to you by January 31 of the following year. A copy of this form will also be sent to the IRS.

The statement will show the total interest you paid during the year, any mortgage insurance premiums you paid, and if you purchased a main home during the year, it also will show the deductible points paid during the year, including seller-paid points. However, it should not show any interest that was paid for you by a government agency.

As a general rule, Form 1098 will include only points that you can fully deduct in the year paid. However, certain points not included on Form 1098 also may be deductible, either in the year paid or over the life of the loan. See the earlier discussion of Points to determine whether you can deduct points not shown on Form 1098.

Prepaid interest on Form 1098.   If you prepaid interest in 2013 that accrued in full by January 15, 2014, this prepaid interest may be included in box 1 of Form 1098. However, you cannot deduct the prepaid amount for January 2014 in 2013. (See Prepaid interest , earlier.) You will have to figure the interest that accrued for 2014 and subtract it from the amount in box 1. You will include the interest for January 2014 with other interest you pay for 2014.

Refunded interest.   If you received a refund of mortgage interest you overpaid in an earlier year, you generally will receive a Form 1098 showing the refund in box 3. See Refunds of interest , earlier.

Mortgage insurance premiums.   The amount of mortgage insurance premiums you paid during 2013 may be shown in Box 4 of Form 1098. See Mortgage Insurance Premiums , earlier.

How To Report

Deduct the home mortgage interest and points reported to you on Form 1098 on Schedule A (Form 1040), line 10. If you paid more deductible interest to the financial institution than the amount shown on Form 1098, show the larger deductible amount on line 10. Attach a statement explaining the difference and print “See attached” next to line 10.

Deduct home mortgage interest that was not reported to you on Form 1098 on Schedule A (Form 1040), line 11. If you paid home mortgage interest to the person from whom you bought your home, show that person's name, address, and taxpayer identification number (TIN) on the dotted lines next to line 11. The seller must give you this number and you must give the seller your TIN. A Form W-9, Request for Taxpayer Identification Number and Certification, can be used for this purpose. Failure to meet any of these requirements may result in a $50 penalty for each failure. The TIN can be either a social security number, an individual taxpayer identification number (issued by the Internal Revenue Service), or an employer identification number.

If you can take a deduction for points that were not reported to you on Form 1098, deduct those points on Schedule A (Form 1040), line 12.

Deduct mortgage insurance premiums on Schedule A (Form 1040), line 13.

More than one borrower.   If you and at least one other person (other than your spouse if you file a joint return) were liable for and paid interest on a mortgage that was for your home, and the other person received a Form 1098 showing the interest that was paid during the year, attach a statement to your return explaining this. Show how much of the interest each of you paid, and give the name and address of the person who received the form. Deduct your share of the interest on Schedule A (Form 1040), line 11, and print “See attached” next to the line. Also, deduct your share of any qualified mortgage insurance premiums on Schedule A (Form 1040), line 13.

  Similarly, if you are the payer of record on a mortgage on which there are other borrowers entitled to a deduction for the interest shown on the Form 1098 you received, deduct only your share of the interest on Schedule A (Form 1040), line 10. Let each of the other borrowers know what his or her share is.

Mortgage proceeds used for business or investment.   If your home mortgage interest deduction is limited under the rules explained in Part II , but all or part of the mortgage proceeds were used for business, investment, or other deductible activities, see Table 2 near the end of this publication. It shows where to deduct the part of your excess interest that is for those activities. The Table 1 Instructions for line 13 in Part II explain how to divide the excess interest among the activities for which the mortgage proceeds were used.

Special Rule for Tenant-Stockholders in Cooperative Housing Corporations

A qualified home includes stock in a cooperative housing corporation owned by a tenant-stockholder. This applies only if the tenant-stockholder is entitled to live in the house or apartment because of owning stock in the cooperative.

Cooperative housing corporation.   This is a corporation that meets all of the following conditions.
  1. Has only one class of stock outstanding,

  2. Has no stockholders other than those who own the stock that can live in a house, apartment, or house trailer owned or leased by the corporation,

  3. Has no stockholders who can receive any distribution out of capital other than on a liquidation of the corporation, and

  4. Meets at least one of the following requirements.

    1. Receives at least 80% of its gross income for the year in which the mortgage interest is paid or incurred from tenant-stockholders. For this purpose, gross income is all income received during the entire year, including amounts received before the corporation changed to cooperative ownership.

    2. At all times during the year, at least 80% of the total square footage of the corporation's property is used or available for use by the tenant-stockholders for residential or residential-related use.

    3. At least 90% of the corporation's expenditures paid or incurred during the year are for the acquisition, construction, management, maintenance, or care of corporate property for the benefit of the tenant-stockholders.

Stock used to secure debt.   In some cases, you cannot use your cooperative housing stock to secure a debt because of either:
  • Restrictions under local or state law, or

  • Restrictions in the cooperative agreement (other than restrictions in which the main purpose is to permit the tenant- 
    stockholder to treat unsecured debt as secured debt).

However, you can treat a debt as secured by the stock to the extent that the proceeds are used to buy the stock under the allocation of interest rules. See chapter 4 of Publication 535 for details on these rules.

Figuring deductible home mortgage interest.   Generally, if you are a tenant-stockholder, you can deduct payments you make for your share of the interest paid or incurred by the cooperative. The interest must be on a debt to buy, build, change, improve, or maintain the cooperative's housing, or on a debt to buy the land.

  Figure your share of this interest by multiplying the total by the following fraction.

  
  Your shares of stock in the cooperative  
The total shares of stock in the cooperative

Limits on deduction.   To figure how the limits discussed in Part II apply to you, treat your share of the cooperative's debt as debt incurred by you. The cooperative should determine your share of its grandfathered debt, its home acquisition debt, and its home equity debt. (Your share of each of these types of debt is equal to the average balance of each debt multiplied by the fraction just given.) After your share of the average balance of each type of debt is determined, you include it with the average balance of that type of debt secured by your stock.

Form 1098.    The cooperative should give you a Form 1098 showing your share of the interest. Use the rules in this publication to determine your deductible mortgage interest.

Part II. Limits on Home Mortgage Interest Deduction

This part of the publication discusses the limits on deductible home mortgage interest. These limits apply to your home mortgage interest expense if you have a home mortgage that does not fit into any of the three categories listed at the beginning of Part I under Fully deductible interest .

Your home mortgage interest deduction is limited to the interest on the part of your home mortgage debt that is not more than your qualified loan limit. This is the part of your home mortgage debt that is grandfathered debt or that is not more than the limits for home acquisition debt and home equity debt. Table 1 can help you figure your qualified loan limit and your deductible home mortgage interest.

Home Acquisition Debt

Home acquisition debt is a mortgage you took out after October 13, 1987, to buy, build, or substantially improve a qualified home (your main or second home). It also must be secured by that home.

If the amount of your mortgage is more than the cost of the home plus the cost of any substantial improvements, only the debt that is not more than the cost of the home plus improvements qualifies as home acquisition debt. The additional debt may qualify as home equity debt (discussed later).

Home acquisition debt limit.   The total amount you can treat as home acquisition debt at any time on your main home and second home cannot be more than $1 million ($500,000 if married filing separately). This limit is reduced (but not below zero) by the amount of your grandfathered debt (discussed later). Debt over this limit may qualify as home equity debt (also discussed later).

Refinanced home acquisition debt.   Any secured debt you use to refinance home acquisition debt is treated as home acquisition debt. However, the new debt will qualify as home acquisition debt only up to the amount of the balance of the old mortgage principal just before the refinancing. Any additional debt not used to buy, build, or substantially improve a qualified home is not home acquisition debt, but may qualify as home equity debt (discussed later).

Mortgage that qualifies later.   A mortgage that does not qualify as home acquisition debt because it does not meet all the requirements may qualify at a later time. For example, a debt that you use to buy your home may not qualify as home acquisition debt because it is not secured by the home. However, if the debt is later secured by the home, it may qualify as home acquisition debt after that time. Similarly, a debt that you use to buy property may not qualify because the property is not a qualified home. However, if the property later becomes a qualified home, the debt may qualify after that time.

Mortgage treated as used to buy, build, or improve home.   A mortgage secured by a qualified home may be treated as home acquisition debt, even if you do not actually use the proceeds to buy, build, or substantially improve the home. This applies in the following situations.
  1. You buy your home within 90 days before or after the date you take out the mortgage. The home acquisition debt is limited to the home's cost, plus the cost of any substantial improvements within the limit described below in (2) or (3). (See Example 1 later.)

  2. You build or improve your home and take out the mortgage before the work is completed. The home acquisition debt is limited to the amount of the expenses incurred within 24 months before the date of the mortgage.

  3. You build or improve your home and take out the mortgage within 90 days after the work is completed. The home acquisition debt is limited to the amount of the expenses incurred within the period beginning 24 months before the work is completed and ending on the date of the mortgage. (See Example 2 later.)

Example 1.

You bought your main home on June 3 for $175,000. You paid for the home with cash you got from the sale of your old home. On July 15, you took out a mortgage of $150,000 secured by your main home. You used the $150,000 to invest in stocks. You can treat the mortgage as taken out to buy your home because you bought the home within 90 days before you took out the mortgage. The entire mortgage qualifies as home acquisition debt because it was not more than the home's cost.

Example 2.

On January 31, John began building a home on the lot that he owned. He used $45,000 of his personal funds to build the home. The home was completed on October 31. On November 21, John took out a $36,000 mortgage that was secured by the home. The mortgage can be treated as used to build the home because it was taken out within 90 days after the home was completed. The entire mortgage qualifies as home acquisition debt because it was not more than the expenses incurred within the period beginning 24 months before the home was completed. This is illustrated by Figure C.  

Date of the mortgage.   The date you take out your mortgage is the day the loan proceeds are disbursed. This is generally the closing date. You can treat the day you apply in writing for your mortgage as the date you take it out. However, this applies only if you receive the loan proceeds within a reasonable time (such as within 30 days) after your application is approved. If a timely application you make is rejected, a reasonable additional time will be allowed to make a new application.

Cost of home or improvements.   To determine your cost, include amounts paid to acquire any interest in a qualified home or to substantially improve the home.

  The cost of building or substantially improving a qualified home includes the costs to acquire real property and building materials, fees for architects and design plans, and required building permits.

Substantial improvement.   An improvement is substantial if it:
  • Adds to the value of your home,

  • Prolongs your home's useful life, or

  • Adapts your home to new uses.

   Repairs that maintain your home in good condition, such as repainting your home, are not substantial improvements. However, if you paint your home as part of a renovation that substantially improves your qualified home, you can include the painting costs in the cost of the improvements.

Acquiring an interest in a home because of a divorce.   If you incur debt to acquire the interest of a spouse or former spouse in a home, because of a divorce or legal separation, you can treat that debt as home acquisition debt.

Part of home not a qualified home.    To figure your home acquisition debt, you must divide the cost of your home and improvements between the part of your home that is a qualified home and any part that is not a qualified home. See Divided use of your home under Qualified Home in Part I.

Home Equity Debt

If you took out a loan for reasons other than to buy, build, or substantially improve your home, it may qualify as home equity debt. In addition, debt you incurred to buy, build, or substantially improve your home, to the extent it is more than the home acquisition debt limit (discussed earlier), may qualify as home equity debt.

Home equity debt is a mortgage you took out after October 13, 1987, that:

  • Does not qualify as home acquisition debt or as grandfathered debt, and

  • Is secured by your qualified home.

Example.

You bought your home for cash 10 years ago. You did not have a mortgage on your home until last year, when you took out a $50,000 loan, secured by your home, to pay for your daughter's college tuition and your father's medical bills. This loan is home equity debt.

Home equity debt limit.   There is a limit on the amount of debt that can be treated as home equity debt. The total home equity debt on your main home and second home is limited to the smaller of:
  • $100,000 ($50,000 if married filing separately), or

  • The total of each home's fair market value (FMV) reduced (but not below zero) by the amount of its home acquisition debt and grandfathered debt. Determine the FMV and the outstanding home acquisition and grandfathered debt for each home on the date that the last debt was secured by the home.

Example.

You own one home that you bought in 2000. Its FMV now is $110,000, and the current balance on your original mortgage (home acquisition debt) is $95,000. Bank M offers you a home mortgage loan of 125% of the FMV of the home less any outstanding mortgages or other liens. To consolidate some of your other debts, you take out a $42,500 home mortgage loan [(125% × $110,000) − $95,000] with Bank M.

Your home equity debt is limited to $15,000. This is the smaller of:

  • $100,000, the maximum limit, or

  • $15,000, the amount that the FMV of $110,000 exceeds the amount of home acquisition debt of $95,000.

Debt higher than limit.   Interest on amounts over the home equity debt limit (such as the interest on $27,500 [$42,500 − $15,000] in the preceding example) generally is treated as personal interest and is not deductible. But if the proceeds of the loan were used for investment, business, or other deductible purposes, the interest may be deductible. If it is, see the Table 1 Instructions for line 13 for an explanation of how to allocate the excess interest.

Part of home not a qualified home.   To figure the limit on your home equity debt, you must divide the FMV of your home between the part that is a qualified home and any part that is not a qualified home. See Divided use of your home under Qualified Home in Part I.

Fair market value (FMV).    This is the price at which the home would change hands between you and a buyer, neither having to sell or buy, and both having reasonable knowledge of all relevant facts. Sales of similar homes in your area, on about the same date your last debt was secured by the home, may be helpful in figuring the FMV.

Grandfathered Debt

If you took out a mortgage on your home before October 14, 1987, or you refinanced such a mortgage, it may qualify as grandfathered debt. To qualify, it must have been secured by your qualified home on October 13, 1987, and at all times after that date. How you used the proceeds does not matter.

Grandfathered debt is not limited. All of the interest you paid on grandfathered debt is fully deductible home mortgage interest. However, the amount of your grandfathered debt reduces the $1 million limit for home acquisition debt and the limit based on your home's fair market value for home equity debt.

Refinanced grandfathered debt.   If you refinanced grandfathered debt after October 13, 1987, for an amount that was not more than the mortgage principal left on the debt, then you still treat it as grandfathered debt. To the extent the new debt is more than that mortgage principal, it is treated as home acquisition or home equity debt, and the mortgage is a mixed-use mortgage (discussed later under Average Mortgage Balance in the Table 1 instructions). The debt must be secured by the qualified home.

  You treat grandfathered debt that was refinanced after October 13, 1987, as grandfathered debt only for the term left on the debt that was refinanced. After that, you treat it as home acquisition debt or home equity debt, depending on how you used the proceeds.

Exception.   If the debt before refinancing was like a balloon note (the principal on the debt was not amortized over the term of the debt), then you treat the refinanced debt as grandfathered debt for the term of the first refinancing. This term cannot be more than 30 years.

Example.

Chester took out a $200,000 first mortgage on his home in 1986. The mortgage was a five-year balloon note and the entire balance on the note was due in 1991. Chester refinanced the debt in 1991 with a new 20-year mortgage. The refinanced debt is treated as grandfathered debt for its entire term (20 years).

Line-of-credit mortgage.    If you had a line-of-credit mortgage on October 13, 1987, and borrowed additional amounts against it after that date, then the additional amounts are either home acquisition debt or home equity debt depending on how you used the proceeds. The balance on the mortgage before you borrowed the additional amounts is grandfathered debt. The newly borrowed amounts are not grandfathered debt because the funds were borrowed after October 13, 1987. See Average Mortgage Balance in the Table 1 Instructions that follow.

Table 1 Instructions

Unless you are subject to the overall limit on itemized deductions, you can deduct all of the interest you paid during the year on mortgages secured by your main home or second home in either of the following two situations.

In either of those cases, you do not need Table 1. Otherwise, you can use Table 1 to determine your qualified loan limit and deductible home mortgage interest.

Fill out only one Table 1 for both your main and second home regardless of how many mortgages you have.

Table 1. Worksheet To Figure Your Qualified Loan Limit and Deductible Home Mortgage Interest For the Current Year See the Table 1 Instructions.

Part I Qualified Loan Limit

1. Enter the average balance of all your grandfathered debt. See line 1 instructions 1.  
2. Enter the average balance of all your home acquisition debt. See line 2 instructions 2.  
3. Enter $1,000,000 ($500,000 if married filing separately) 3.  
4. Enter the larger of the amount on line 1 or the amount on line 3 4.  
5. Add the amounts on lines 1 and 2. Enter the total here 5.  
6. Enter the smaller of the amount on line 4 or the amount on line 5 6.  
7. If you have home equity debt, enter the smaller of $100,000 ($50,000 if married filing separately) or your limited amount. See the line 7 instructions for the limit which may apply to you. 7.  
8. Add the amounts on lines 6 and 7. Enter the total. This is your qualified loan limit. 8.  

Part II Deductible Home Mortgage Interest

9. Enter the total of the average balances of all mortgages on all qualified homes. 
See line 9 instructions
9.  
 
  • If line 8 is less than line 9, go on to line 10.

  • If line 8 is equal to or more than line 9, stop here. All of your interest on all the mortgages included on line 9 is deductible as home mortgage interest on Schedule A (Form 1040).

   
10. Enter the total amount of interest that you paid. See line 10 instructions 10.  
11. Divide the amount on line 8 by the amount on line 9. Enter the result as a decimal amount (rounded to three places) 11. × .
12. Multiply the amount on line 10 by the decimal amount on line 11. Enter the result. This is your deductible home mortgage interest. Enter this amount on Schedule A (Form 1040) 12.  
13. Subtract the amount on line 12 from the amount on line 10. Enter the result. This is not home mortgage interest. See line 13 instructions 13.  

Home equity debt only.   If all of your mortgages are home equity debt, do not fill in lines 1 through 5. Enter zero on line 6 and complete the rest of Table 1.

Average Mortgage Balance

You have to figure the average balance of each mortgage to determine your qualified loan limit. You need these amounts to complete lines 1, 2, and 9 of Table 1. You can use the highest mortgage balances during the year, but you may benefit most by using the average balances. The following are methods you can use to figure your average mortgage balances. However, if a mortgage has more than one category of debt, see Mixed-use mortgages , later, in this section.

Average of first and last balance method.   You can use this method if all the following apply.
  • You did not borrow any new amounts on the mortgage during the year. (This does not include borrowing the original mortgage amount.)

  • You did not prepay more than one month's principal during the year. (This includes prepayment by refinancing your home or by applying proceeds from its sale.)

  • You had to make level payments at fixed equal intervals on at least a semi-annual basis. You treat your payments as level even if they were adjusted from time to time because of changes in the interest rate.

  
To figure your average balance, complete the following worksheet.

  
1. Enter the balance as of the first day of the year that the mortgage was secured by your qualified home during the year (generally January 1)  
2. Enter the balance as of the last day of the year that the mortgage was secured by your qualified home during the year (generally December 31)  
3. Add amounts on lines 1 and 2  
4. Divide the amount on line 3 by 2. Enter the result  

Interest paid divided by interest rate method.   You can use this method if at all times in 2013 the mortgage was secured by your qualified home and the interest was paid at least monthly.

  
Complete the following worksheet to figure your average balance.

  
1. Enter the interest paid in 2013. Do not include points, mortgage insurance premiums, or any interest paid in 2013 that is for a year after 2013. However, do include interest that is for 2013 but was paid in an earlier year  
2. Enter the annual interest rate on the mortgage. If the interest rate varied in 2013, use the lowest rate for the year  
3. Divide the amount on line 1 by the amount on line 2. Enter the result  

Example.

Mr. Blue had a line of credit secured by his main home all year. He paid interest of $2,500 on this loan. The interest rate on the loan was 9% (.09) all year. His average balance using this method is $27,778, figured as follows.

1. Enter the interest paid in 2013. Do not include points, mortgage insurance premiums, or any interest paid in 2013 that is for a year after 2013. However, do include interest that is for 2013 but was paid in an earlier year $2,500
2. Enter the annual interest rate on the mortgage. If the interest rate varied in 2013, use the lowest rate for the year .09
3. Divide the amount on line 1 by the amount on line 2. Enter the result $27,778

Statements provided by your lender.   If you receive monthly statements showing the closing balance or the average balance for the month, you can use either to figure your average balance for the year. You can treat the balance as zero for any month the mortgage was not secured by your qualified home.

  For each mortgage, figure your average balance by adding your monthly closing or average balances and dividing that total by the number of months the home secured by that mortgage was a qualified home during the year.

  If your lender can give you your average balance for the year, you can use that amount.

Example.

Ms. Brown had a home equity loan secured by her main home all year. She received monthly statements showing her average balance for each month. She can figure her average balance for the year by adding her monthly average balances and dividing the total by 12.

Mixed-use mortgages.   A mixed-use mortgage is a loan that consists of more than one of the three categories of debt (grandfathered debt, home acquisition debt, and home equity debt). For example, a mortgage you took out during the year is a mixed-use mortgage if you used its proceeds partly to refinance a mortgage that you took out in an earlier year to buy your home (home acquisition debt) and partly to buy a car (home equity debt).

  Complete lines 1 and 2 of Table 1 by including the separate average balances of any grandfathered debt and home acquisition debt in your mixed-use mortgage. Do not use the methods described earlier in this section to figure the average balance of either category. Instead, for each category, use the following method.
  1. Figure the balance of that category of debt for each month. This is the amount of the loan proceeds allocated to that category, reduced by your principal payments on the mortgage previously applied to that category. Principal payments on a mixed-use mortgage are applied in full to each category of debt, until its balance is zero, in the following order:

    1. First, any home equity debt,

    2. Next, any grandfathered debt, and

    3. Finally, any home acquisition debt.

  2. Add together the monthly balances figured in (1).

  3. Divide the result in (2) by 12.

  Complete line 9 of Table 1 by including the average balance of the entire mixed-use mortgage, figured under one of the methods described earlier in this section.

Example 1.

In 1986, Sharon took out a $1,400,000 mortgage to buy her main home (grandfathered debt). On March 2, 2013, when the home had a fair market value of $1,700,000 and she owed $1,100,000 on the mortgage, Sharon took out a second mortgage for $200,000. She used $180,000 of the proceeds to make substantial improvements to her home (home acquisition debt) and the remaining $20,000 to buy a car (home equity debt). Under the loan agreement, Sharon must make principal payments of $1,000 at the end of each month. During 2013, her principal payments on the second mortgage totaled $10,000.

To complete Table 1, line 2, Sharon must figure a separate average balance for the part of her second mortgage that is home acquisition debt. The January and February balances were zero. The March through December balances were all $180,000, because none of her principal payments are applied to the home acquisition debt. (They are all applied to the home equity debt, reducing it to $10,000 [$20,000 − $10,000].) The monthly balances of the home acquisition debt total $1,800,000 ($180,000 × 10). Therefore, the average balance of the home acquisition debt for 2013 was $150,000 ($1,800,000 ÷ 12).

Example 2.

The facts are the same as in Example 1. In 2014, Sharon's January through October principal payments on her second mortgage are applied to the home equity debt, reducing it to zero. The balance of the home acquisition debt remains $180,000 for each of those months. Because her November and December principal payments are applied to the home acquisition debt, the November balance is $179,000 ($180,000 − $1,000) and the December balance is $178,000 ($180,000 − $2,000). The monthly balances total $2,157,000 [($180,000 × 10) + $179,000 + $178,000]. Therefore, the average balance of the home acquisition debt for 2014 is $179,750 ($2,157,000 ÷ 12).

Line 1

Figure the average balance for the current year of each mortgage you had on all qualified homes on October 13, 1987 (grandfathered debt). Add the results together and enter the total on line 1. Include the average balance for the current year for any grandfathered debt part of a mixed-use mortgage.

Line 2

Figure the average balance for the current year of each mortgage you took out on all qualified homes after October 13, 1987, to buy, build, or substantially improve the home (home acquisition debt). Add the results together and enter the total on line 2. Include the average balance for the current year for any home acquisition debt part of a mixed-use mortgage.

Line 7

If you have home equity debt, complete line 7.

The amount on line 7 cannot be more than the smaller of:

  1. $100,000 ($50,000 if married filing separately), or

  2. The total of each home's fair market value (FMV) reduced (but not below zero) by the amount of its home acquisition debt and grandfathered debt. Determine the FMV and the outstanding home acquisition and grandfathered debt for each home on the date that the last debt was secured by the home.

See Home equity debt limit under Home Equity Debt, earlier, for more information about fair market value.

Line 9

Figure the average balance for the current year of each outstanding home mortgage. Add the average balances together and enter the total on line 9. See Average Mortgage Balance , earlier.

Note. When figuring the average balance of a mixed-use mortgage, for line 9, determine the average balance of the entire mortgage.

Line 10

If you make payments to a financial institution, or to a person whose business is making loans, you should get Form 1098 or a similar statement from the lender. This form will show the amount of interest to enter on line 10. Also include on this line any other interest payments made on debts secured by a qualified home for which you did not receive a Form 1098. Do not include points or mortgage insurance premiums on this line.

Claiming your deductible points.   Figure your deductible points as follows.
  1. Figure your deductible points for the current year using the rules explained under Points in Part I.

  2. Multiply the amount in item (1) by the decimal amount on line 11. Enter the result on Schedule A (Form 1040), line 10 or 12, whichever applies. This amount is fully deductible.

  3. Subtract the result in item (2) from the amount in item (1). This amount is not deductible as home mortgage interest. However, if you used any of the loan proceeds for business or investment activities, see the instructions for line 13, next.

Claiming your deductible mortgage insurance premiums.   If your adjusted gross income on Form 1040, line 38, is more than $109,000 ($54,500 if married filing separately), you cannot deduct your mortgage insurance premiums. Otherwise, figure your deductible mortgage insurance premiums for the current year using the rules explained under Mortgage Insurance Premiums in Part I. If the amount on Form 1040, line 38, is $100,000 or less ($50,000 or less if married filing separately), enter the full amount of your qualified mortgage insurance premiums on Schedule A (Form 1040), line 13. If the amount on Form 1040, line 38, is more than $100,000 ($50,000 if married filing separately), your deduction is limited. Enter your qualified mortgage insurance premiums on line 1 of the Mortgage Insurance Premiums Deduction Worksheet in the instructions for Schedule A (Form 1040) to figure the amount to enter on Schedule A (Form 1040), line 13.

Line 13

You cannot deduct the amount of interest on line 13 as home mortgage interest. If you did not use any of the proceeds of any mortgage included on line 9 of the worksheet for business, investment, or other deductible activities, then all the interest on line 13 is personal interest. Personal interest is not deductible.

Table 2. Where To Deduct Your Interest Expense

IF you have ... THEN deduct it on ... AND for more information go to ...
deductible student loan interest Form 1040, line 33, or Form 1040A, line 18 Publication 970, Tax Benefits for Education.
deductible home mortgage interest and points reported on Form 1098 Schedule A (Form 1040), line 10 this publication (936).
deductible home mortgage interest not reported on Form 1098 Schedule A (Form 1040), line 11 this publication (936).
deductible points not reported on Form 1098 Schedule A (Form 1040), line 12 this publication (936).
deductible mortgage insurance premiums Schedule A (Form 1040), line 13 this publication (936).
deductible investment interest (other than incurred to produce rents or royalties) Schedule A (Form 1040), line 14 Publication 550, Investment Income and Expenses.
deductible business interest (non-farm) Schedule C or C-EZ (Form 1040) Publication 535.
deductible farm business interest Schedule F (Form 1040) Publications 225, Farmer's Tax Guide, and 535.
deductible interest incurred to produce rents or royalties Schedule E (Form 1040) Publications 527 and 535.
personal interest not deductible.

If you did use all or part of any mortgage proceeds for business, investment, or other deductible activities, the part of the interest on line 13 that is allocable to those activities can be deducted as business, investment, or other deductible expense, subject to any limits that apply. Table 2 shows where to deduct that interest. See Allocation of Interest in chapter 4 of Publication 535 for an explanation of how to determine the use of loan proceeds.

The following two rules describe how to allocate the interest on line 13 to a business or investment activity.

  • If you used all of the proceeds of the mortgages on line 9 for one activity, then all the interest on line 13 is allocated to that activity. In this case, deduct the interest on the form or schedule to which it applies.

  • If you used the proceeds of the mortgages on line 9 for more than one activity, then you can allocate the interest on line 13 among the activities in any manner you select (up to the total amount of interest otherwise allocable to each activity, explained next).

You figure the total amount of interest otherwise allocable to each activity by multiplying the amount on line 10 by the following fraction.

  Amount on line 9 
allocated to that activity
 
Total amount on line 9

Example.

Don had two mortgages (A and B) on his main home during the entire year. Mortgage A had an average balance of $90,000, and mortgage B had an average balance of $110,000.

Don determines that the proceeds of mortgage A are allocable to personal expenses for the entire year. The proceeds of mortgage B are allocable to his business for the entire year. Don paid $14,000 of interest on mortgage A and $16,000 of interest on mortgage B. He figures the amount of home mortgage interest he can deduct by using Table 1. Since both mortgages are home equity debt, Don determines that $15,000 of the interest can be deducted as home mortgage interest.

The interest Don can allocate to his business is the smaller of:

  1. The amount on Table 1, line 13 of the worksheet ($15,000), or

  2. The total amount of interest allocable to the business ($16,500), figured by multiplying the amount on line 10 (the $30,000 total interest paid) by the following fraction.

  $110,000 (the average balance 
of the mortgage allocated 
to the business)
 
$200,000 (the total average 
balance of all mortgages)

Because $15,000 is the smaller of items (1) and (2), that is the amount of interest Don can allocate to his business. He deducts this amount on his Schedule C (Form 1040).

How To Get Tax Help

Whether it's help with a tax issue, preparing your tax return or a need for a free publication or form, get the help you need the way you want it: online, use a smart phone, call or walk in to an IRS office or volunteer site near you.

Free help with your tax return.   You can get free help preparing your return nationwide from IRS-certified volunteers. The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program helps low-to-moderate income, elderly, people with disabilities, and limited English proficient taxpayers. The Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) program helps taxpayers age 60 and older with their tax returns. Most VITA and TCE sites offer free electronic filing and all volunteers will let you know about credits and deductions you may be entitled to claim. In addition, some VITA and TCE sites provide taxpayers the opportunity to prepare their own return with help from an IRS-certified volunteer. To find the nearest VITA or TCE site, you can use the VITA Locator Tool on IRS.gov, download the IRS2Go app, or call 1-800-906-9887.

  As part of the TCE program, AARP offers the Tax-Aide counseling program. To find the nearest AARP Tax-Aide site, visit AARP's website at www.aarp.org/money/taxaide or call 1-888-227-7669. For more information on these programs, go to IRS.gov and enter “VITA” in the search box.

Internet.    IRS.gov and IRS2Go are ready when you are —24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
  • Download the free IRS2Go app from the iTunes app store or from Google Play. Use it to check your refund status, order transcripts of your tax returns or tax account, watch the IRS YouTube channel, get IRS news as soon as it's released to the public, subscribe to filing season updates or daily tax tips, and follow the IRS Twitter news feed, @IRSnews, to get the latest federal tax news, including information about tax law changes and important IRS programs.

  • Check the status of your 2013 refund with the Where's My Refund? application on IRS.gov or download the IRS2Go app and select the Refund Status option. The IRS issues more than 9 out of 10 refunds in less than 21 days. Using these applications, you can start checking on the status of your return within 24 hours after we receive your e-filed return or 4 weeks after you mail a paper return. You will also be given a personalized refund date as soon as the IRS processes your tax return and approves your refund. The IRS updates Where's My Refund? every 24 hours, usually overnight, so you only need to check once a day.

  • Use the Interactive Tax Assistant (ITA) to research your tax questions. No need to wait on the phone or stand in line. The ITA is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and provides you with a variety of tax information related to general filing topics, deductions, credits, and income. When you reach the response screen, you can print the entire interview and the final response for your records. New subject areas are added on a regular basis. 
    Answers not provided through ITA may be found in Tax Trails, one of the Tax Topics on IRS.gov which contain general individual and business tax information or by searching the IRS Tax Map, which includes an international subject index. You can use the IRS Tax Map, to search publications and instructions by topic or keyword. The IRS Tax Map integrates forms and publications into one research tool and provides single-point access to tax law information by subject. When the user searches the IRS Tax Map, they will be provided with links to related content in existing IRS publications, forms and instructions, questions and answers, and Tax Topics.

  • Coming this filing season, you can immediately view and print for free all 5 types of individual federal tax transcripts (tax returns, tax account, record of account, wage and income statement, and certification of non-filing) using Get Transcript. You can also ask the IRS to mail a return or an account transcript to you. Only the mail option is available by choosing the Tax Records option on the IRS2Go app by selecting Mail Transcript on IRS.gov or by calling 1-800-908-9946. Tax return and tax account transcripts are generally available for the current year and the past three years.

  • Determine if you are eligible for the EITC and estimate the amount of the credit with the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) Assistant.

  • Visit Understanding Your IRS Notice or Letter to get answers to questions about a notice or letter you received from the IRS.

  • If you received the First Time Homebuyer Credit, you can use the First Time Homebuyer Credit Account Look-up tool for information on your repayments and account balance.

  • Check the status of your amended return using Where's My Amended Return? Go to IRS.gov and enter Where's My Amended Return? in the search box. You can generally expect your amended return to be processed up to 12 weeks from the date we receive it. It can take up to 3 weeks from the date you mailed it to show up in our system.

  • Make a payment using one of several safe and convenient electronic payment options available on IRS.gov. Select the Payment tab on the front page of IRS.gov for more information.

  • Determine if you are eligible and apply for an online payment agreement, if you owe more tax than you can pay today.

  • Figure your income tax withholding with the IRS Withholding Calculator on IRS.gov. Use it if you've had too much or too little withheld, your personal situation has changed, you're starting a new job or you just want to see if you're having the right amount withheld.

  • Determine if you might be subject to the Alternative Minimum Tax by using the Alternative Minimum Tax Assistant on IRS.gov.

  • Request an Electronic Filing PIN by going to IRS.gov and entering Electronic Filing PIN in the search box.

  • Download forms, instructions and publications, including accessible versions for people with disabilities.

  • Locate the nearest Taxpayer Assistance Center (TAC) using the Office Locator tool on IRS.gov, or choose the Contact Us option on the IRS2Go app and search Local Offices. An employee can answer questions about your tax account or help you set up a payment plan. Before you visit, check the Office Locator on IRS.gov, or Local Offices under Contact Us on IRS2Go to confirm the address, phone number, days and hours of operation, and the services provided. If you have a special need, such as a disability, you can request an appointment. Call the local number listed in the Office Locator, or look in the phone book under United States Government, Internal Revenue Service.

  • Apply for an Employer Identification Number (EIN). Go to IRS.gov and enter Apply for an EIN in the search box.

  • Read the Internal Revenue Code, regulations, or other official guidance.

  • Read Internal Revenue Bulletins.

  • Sign up to receive local and national tax news and more by email. Just click on “subscriptions” above the search box on IRS.gov and choose from a variety of options.

Phone.    You can call the IRS, or you can carry it in your pocket with the IRS2Go app on your smart phone or tablet. Download the free IRS2Go app from the iTunes app store or from Google Play.
  • Call to locate the nearest volunteer help site, 1-800-906-9887 or you can use the VITA Locator Tool on IRS.gov, or download the IRS2Go app. Low-to-moderate income, elderly, people with disabilities, and limited English proficient taxpayers can get free help with their tax return from the nationwide Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program. The Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) program helps taxpayers age 60 and older with their tax returns. Most VITA and TCE sites offer free electronic filing. Some VITA and TCE sites provide IRS-certified volunteers who can help prepare your tax return. Through the TCE program, AARP offers the Tax-Aide counseling program; call 1-888-227-7669 to find the nearest Tax-Aide location.

  • Call the automated Where's My Refund? information hotline to check the status of your 2013 refund 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at 1-800-829-1954. If you e-file, you can start checking on the status of your return within 24 hours after the IRS receives your tax return or 4 weeks after you've mailed a paper return. The IRS issues more than 9 out of 10 refunds in less than 21 days. Where's My Refund? will give you a personalized refund date as soon as the IRS processes your tax return and approves your refund. Before you call this automated hotline, have your 2013 tax return handy so you can enter your social security number, your filing status, and the exact whole dollar amount of your refund. The IRS updates Where's My Refund? every 24 hours, usually overnight, so you only need to check once a day. Note, the above information is for our automated hotline. Our live phone and walk-in assistors can research the status of your refund only if it's been 21 days or more since you filed electronically or more than 6 weeks since you mailed your paper return.

  • Call the Amended Return Hotline, 1-866-464-2050, to check the status of your amended return. You can generally expect your amended return to be processed up to 12 weeks from the date we receive it. It can take up to 3 weeks from the date you mailed it to show up in our system.

  • Call 1-800-TAX-FORM (1-800-829-3676) to order current-year forms, instructions, publications, and prior-year forms and instructions (limited to 5 years). You should receive your order within 10 business days.

  • Call TeleTax, 1-800-829-4477, to listen to pre-recorded messages covering general and business tax information. If, between January and April 15, you still have questions about the Form 1040, 1040A, or 1040EZ (like filing requirements, dependents, credits, Schedule D, pensions and IRAs or self-employment taxes), call 1-800-829-1040.

  • Call using TTY/TDD equipment, 1-800-829-4059 to ask tax questions or order forms and publications. The TTY/TDD telephone number is for people who are deaf, hard of hearing, or have a speech disability. These individuals can also contact the IRS through relay services such as the Federal Relay Service.

Walk-in.   You can find a selection of forms, publications and services — in-person.
  • Products. You can walk in to some post offices, libraries, and IRS offices to pick up certain forms, instructions, and publications. Some IRS offices, libraries, and city and county government offices have a collection of products available to photocopy from reproducible proofs.

  • Services. You can walk in to your local TAC for face-to-face tax help. An employee can answer questions about your tax account or help you set up a payment plan. Before visiting, use the Office Locator tool on IRS.gov, or choose the Contact Us option on the IRS2Go app and search Local Offices for days and hours of operation, and services provided.

Mail.   You can send your order for forms, instructions, and publications to the address below. You should receive a response within 10 business days after your request is received.

Internal Revenue Service 
1201 N. Mitsubishi Motorway 
Bloomington, IL 61705-6613

 
 
The Taxpayer Advocate Service Is Here to Help You. The Taxpayer Advocate Service (TAS) is your voice at the IRS. Our job is to ensure that every taxpayer is treated fairly and that you know and understand your rights.  
 
What can TAS do for you? We can offer you free help with IRS problems that you can't resolve on your own. We know this process can be confusing, but the worst thing you can do is nothing at all! TAS can help if you can't resolve your tax problem and:
  • Your problem is causing financial difficulties for you, your family, or your business.

  • You face (or your business is facing) an immediate threat of adverse action.

  • You've tried repeatedly to contact the IRS but no one has responded, or the IRS hasn't responded by the date promised.

 
 
If you qualify for our help, you'll be assigned to one advocate who'll be with you at every turn and will do everything possible to resolve your problem. Here's why we can help:
  • TAS is an independent organization within the IRS.

  • Our advocates know how to work with the IRS.

  • Our services are free and tailored to meet your needs.

  • We have offices in every state, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico.

 
 
How can you reach us? If you think TAS can help you, call your local advocate, whose number is in your local directory and at Taxpayer Advocate, or call us toll-free at 1-877-777-4778. 
 
How else does TAS help taxpayers? 
 
TAS also works to resolve large-scale, systemic problems that affect many taxpayers. If you know of one of these broad issues, please report it to us through our Systemic Advocacy Management System.

Low Income Taxpayer Clinics

Low Income Taxpayer Clinics (LITCs) serve individuals whose income is below a certain level and need to resolve tax problems such as audits, appeals and tax collection disputes. Some clinics can provide information about taxpayer rights and responsibilities in different languages for individuals who speak English as a second language. Visit Taxpayer Advocate or see IRS Publication 4134, Low Income Taxpayer Clinic List.


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