Most state and local governments charge an annual tax on the value of real property that you own. Any of these real estate taxes (also called property taxes) on your primary or secondary residence are generally deductible on your return. For exceptions, see the additional information below.
To enter your deductible real estate taxes in the TaxAct® program:
- From within your TaxAct return (Online or Desktop), click Federal. On smaller devices, click the menu icon in the upper left-hand corner, then select Federal
- Click Itemized or Standard Deductions to expand the section, then click Taxes paid
- Click Continue on the screen Itemized Deductions - State and Local Taxes, and then click No to reach the screen Itemized Deductions - Real Estate Taxes Paid
- Enter the qualified amount of real estate taxes you paid in 2018.
The amount of real estate taxes paid may be reported to you on Form 1098, Box 4 Mortgage Interest Statement.
You cannot include:
- Foreign taxes you paid on real estate.
- Itemized charges for services to specific property or persons (for example, a $20 monthly charge per house for trash collection, a $5 charge for every 1,000 gallons of water consumed, or a flat charge for mowing a lawn that had grown higher than permitted under a local ordinance)
- Charges for improvements that tend to increase the value of your property (for example, an assessment to build a new sidewalk). The cost of a property improvement is added to the basis of the property. However, a charge is deductible if it is used only to maintain an existing public facility in service (for example, a charge to repair an existing sidewalk, and any interest included in that charge).
If your mortgage payments include your real estate taxes, you can include only the amount the mortgage company actually paid to the taxing authority in 2018.
If you sold your home in 2018, any real estate tax charged to the buyer should be shown on your settlement statement and in box 6 of any Form 1099-S you received. This amount is considered a refund of real estate taxes. See Refunds and rebates, later. Any real estate taxes you paid at closing should be shown on your settlement statement.
For more information see the IRS Instructions for Schedule A, Line 5 State and Local Taxes.
Your deduction may be limited. See Reduction of Itemized Deductions for more information.