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To enter mortgage interest:

  1. From within your TaxAct return (Online or Desktop), click Federal. On smaller devices, click in the upper left-hand corner, then click Federal.
  2. Click Itemized or Standard Deductions in the Federal Quick Q&A Topics menu to expand, click Interest expenses, then click Yes.
  3. Continue with the interview process to enter all of the appropriate information from Form 1098 Mortgage Interest Statement.

Per IRS Publication 936 Home Mortgage Interest Deduction, page 2:

Note. Interest on home equity loans and lines of credit are deductible only if the borrowed funds are used to buy, build, or substantially improve the taxpayer’s home that secures the loan. As under prior law, the loan must be secured by the taxpayer’s main home or second home (qualified residence), not exceed the cost of the home, and meet other requirements.

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 doesn’t 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 (or your spouse if married filing a joint return) took out after October 13, 1987, and prior to December 16, 2017 (see binding contract exception below), to buy, build, or substantially improve your home (called home acquisition debt), but only if throughout 2020 these mortgages plus any grandfathered debt totaled $1 million or less ($500,000 or less if married filing separately).
    Exception. A taxpayer who enters into a written binding contract before December 15, 2017, to close on the purchase of a principal residence before January 1, 2018, and who purchases such residence before April 1, 2018, is considered to have incurred the home acquisition debt prior to December 16, 2017.
  3. Mortgages you (or your spouse if married filing a joint return) took out after December 15, 2017, to buy, build, or substantially improve your home (called home acquisition debt), but only if throughout 2020 these mortgages plus any grandfathered debt totaled $750,000 or less ($375,000 or less if married filing separately).

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 debt and home acquisition debt.

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

Note that any link in the information above is updated each year automatically and will take you to the most recent version of the document at the time it is accessed.


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