Can I split the cost of appliances with my tenant? What if it is an owner occupied rental?

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Can I split the cost of appliances with my tenant? What if it is an owner occupied rental?

Indy Anna Explains…

–  Do I have to provide appliances?
– What happens when one breaks?
– Can I split the cost of an appliance with my tenant?

We were asked about the splitting the cost of appliances and paying taxes on an owner
occupied rental, and wanted to help answer this for everyone.

Generally speaking this is going to vary state to state some for the appliances, and a few
possible variations as far as taxes go as well- great time to remember this is only meant to be
helpful, and I’m not your personal tax professional ; )

(know what you don’t know and  to ask your professional, remember?)

So generally speaking if an appliance is provided, it’s the landlord’s responsibility to repair a
broken appliance. Here’s a few things to keep in mind;
 Some states require all landlords to provide kitchen and laundry appliances, while in
others only kitchen and some states don’t require anything to be provided.
 There are different rules for each state as far as the repair time frame  of appliances
(also different versions of repair time frames on amenities vs. necessities)
 Some states require notices of repair to be made in writing only, while other states allow
for notices to be submitted orally
 Some states require tenants to go through local housing authorities  to be contacted first

So basically, if you provided it from the beginning, it’s generally your responsibility to fix it with a
few state exemptions.

Here’s a look at what’s required for you to provide and therefore repair;
(with the exception of Wyoming- any broken appliance submitted in writing the owner chooses
not to fix can be grounds for the owner to terminate the lease)
 Kitchen/  Alaska (stove/oven only), Colorado, Indiana, Iowa, Massachusetts, New Jersey
(multi-family only)
 Laundry/ Connecticut*, Indiana, Iowa, Massachusetts, Montana*, Nebraska, New
Hampshire*, New Jersey (multi-family only), North Carolina*, North Dakota*
 *up to local municipality/housing authority to require, not determined at a state level

So it depends on where you own/rent as to what happens and splitting the cost of an appliance.
Overall, it seems like legally you may be required to repair some items if you’ve provided them
from the beginning, especially if they are outlined in the lease agreement.

As far as splitting the cost of these go, it might be possible if there’s a good relationship with
your tenant and proper use of dialogue, for things like rent credits etc.

Keep in mind however to discuss (and write out) what happens when your tenant leaves, who is
keeping the appliance if a deal was worked out for splitting the cost- then add to it (being less
likely to happen) if you’re living there splitting the usage on top of what you may/may not be
required to provide

Now along the same lines of splitting things up, taxes on an owner occupied rental.

This is a great question for your tax professional, but generally speaking half of the property is
treated like a personal dwelling, while half is treated as your investment property (income taxes
alone, not property taxes, which owner is required to pay).

Usually, just keep this in mind about your rental taxes:

 Generally half of your mortgage interest gets deducted from the ‘homeowner’ side
 Half of your property taxes get deducted
 And half of any deductible points
So think of it like half personal, half income generating (therefore paying income taxes on)
accordingly.  Now your tax professionals going to have a much more elaborate breakdown of
this and be able to give you 100% of the details, but generally speaking consider your owner
occupied rental as ‘halfsies’.

Thanks so much!  = )

Make the universe SMILE.

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