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Author Topic: Best approach to writing off RV for business  (Read 13040 times)

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: Best approach to writing off RV for business
« Reply #30 on: June 16, 2020, 09:58:28 AM »
I think I may have not been clear. 
My mistake.  I looked back at the original post in this topic but it was by tiffinboise, not you.  That usage was different than what you describe.   Yours seems a fairly clear-cut case of temporary office use without the complications of vehicle expenses or shared personal & business use.
Start out by avoiding any statement about deducting for an RV, because that really muddies the waters. You want to deduct for temporary office space, which ought to be straight-forward. It's also a portable space that can be moved and set up where needed, but that's not unusual either.     Then focus on how to make sure the fact that the office is also occasionally used for personal quarters and travel and how to make sure the two different usages are clearly delineated and documented.  If you can show a clear dividing line between business time and personal use time, there should be little problem with the deduction.
« Last Edit: June 16, 2020, 10:11:04 AM by Gary RV_Wizard »
Gary Brinck
Summers: Black Mountain, NC
Home: Ocala National Forest, FL


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Re: Best approach to writing off RV for business
« Reply #31 on: June 16, 2020, 06:02:05 PM »
Thanks Linda.  We had found and read 280A but tax law is not the kind of law my wife practices so we just aren't comfortable with our interpretations.  We had seen the Forbes article and actually read the court decision but that was a different situation as when our RV is used for business, it is only for business and clearly so.  When for personal, that is also clear but will be limited to just a few trips each year to visit family as the primary purpose is for business use.  The google link you shared was helpful as it revealed a few articles I had not found and a couple of links to people who focus on this area of tax law so I'm going to reach out to a few of them.

Thanks Gary, no problem.  I agree this seems reasonable.  I just want a CPA or attorney or someone familiar with this situation to agree with me before I move it forward and write off a percentage based on business use.  You are correct it is directly a temporary office use for the business.

Thanks everyone for the help.  I think I've got enough to go on now.


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Re: Best approach to writing off RV for business
« Reply #32 on: June 17, 2020, 10:51:58 AM »
Just thinking about the other piece of this puzzle.  In order to qualify as a business expense, whatever space one is using as the "business" MUST BE USED 100% exclusively for the business.  I had a home office in my S&B dwelling - a converted bedroom.  I could not use the bed in the room for sleeping, I could not keep clothes in the closet, or have clothes chests for example.  The same is true for your RV.  If you are using only a portion of the RV exclusively for business, then only that percentage of the total space can be a business expense.  Although in the court case, the RV was moving about, it makes no difference if it's stationary.  The rule is 100% with the exception of 14 days for other uses.  In my case, the "office space" could have been used as a guest bedroom for no more than 14 days per year for example.  The IRS has been pretty adamant about this going back as far as 1982 with their court rulings.

Look at it from IRS standpoint, if one could switch back and forth willy-nilly between uses, i.e. office vs. RV for travel, vs. bedroom, vs. a boat, then anyone at any time could set up some bogus business (storing inventory for example in the RV, charging $1 to friends for a fishing cruise, and similar) and claim a write-off.  In order to write-off space in a dwelling as business expense, the use MUST BE 100% for the office, with the 14 day exception. It's not the time of business usage vs. the time of personal usage, it's the SPACE usage that matters.  Your assertion about "primary" use as a business vs. a little time for personal use is not how the IRS sees it.  If one wants a business write off for office space, then the space is to be 100% for business.

Anyway, that's the way I learned it, and as taught by my very experienced, long-time business tax accountant who's dealt with just about every business tax situation you can imagine.  I'd also be cautious about the business "renting" the RV space to you for your travels.  Unless this is the primary service provided by the business (renting space), then the IRS will pretty much see through what you are doing and would likely disallow this. 

Good luck anyway
Linda with kitty Sara
2019 Outdoors RV Timber Ridge
2017 Ford F250 Lariat aka Gypsy Rose