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Old 12.01.2012, 14:39
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Home improvement and tax

I didn't want to derail the other thread on value-addition, so I'll ask this question here.
We bought our new appartment 2 years ago and would like to retile the bathrooms and install a different shower unit. The reason being the existing tiles are bloody ugly and the shower has cheap plastic doors. Are such changes tax-deductible? We will not be adding any value to the appt, nor are we replacing older fixtures, we just want to change the look of the bathrooms.
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Old 12.01.2012, 14:48
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Re: Home improvement and tax

The house was brand new 2 years ago?
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Old 12.01.2012, 14:48
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Re: Home improvement and tax

AFAIK yes.

What I have been told is that "new build" is not deductible, but "renovation and maintenance" is.
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Old 12.01.2012, 14:50
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Re: Home improvement and tax

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The house was brand new 2 years ago?
The building was completed in 2007. We are the first occupants of our appartment, we moved in September 2009.
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Old 12.01.2012, 14:58
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Re: Home improvement and tax

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The building was completed in 2007. We are the first occupants of our appartment, we moved in September 2009.
I'd doubt that they'd accept it then after only two years of use - arguing that it needs to be replaced for reasons of functionality or degradation will be difficult

Any idea how much it costs to do the work and how much you stand to gain?

Reason for asking is to balance the potential gain against the cost of advice. I was led to believe I could save A LOT on my current house build and burned EIGHT GRAND on tax advice, only to be told that I couldn't claim at all

Anyway - balance the cost of a tax advisor at CHF500 per hour against what you might save and see if its worth picking up the phone. But my gut-feel is that it would be a stretch
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Old 12.01.2012, 15:20
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Re: Home improvement and tax

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I'd doubt that they'd accept it then after only two years of use - arguing that it needs to be replaced for reasons of functionality or degradation will be difficult

Any idea how much it costs to do the work and how much you stand to gain?

Reason for asking is to balance the potential gain against the cost of advice. I was led to believe I could save A LOT on my current house build and burned EIGHT GRAND on tax advice, only to be told that I couldn't claim at all

Anyway - balance the cost of a tax advisor at CHF500 per hour against what you might save and see if its worth picking up the phone. But my gut-feel is that it would be a stretch
We haven't even got any quotes yet, so I've no idea, maybe 6k - 8k?

500.- per hour for tax advice?
We paid a guy 100.- to sit with us for an hour and just check the returns I'd already filled in.
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Old 12.01.2012, 15:40
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Re: Home improvement and tax

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We haven't even got any quotes yet, so I've no idea, maybe 6k - 8k?

500.- per hour for tax advice?
We paid a guy 100.- to sit with us for an hour and just check the returns I'd already filled in.
Ballpark figure is Chf60 per m2 for laying only add Chf10 per l/m for silicon joints and any special edges or corners and you will be close to the mark.
www.keramikland.ch is ok/good pricewise but their displays and tiles are top quality, so in the bang for the buck they are ok.
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Old 12.01.2012, 15:43
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Re: Home improvement and tax

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We haven't even got any quotes yet, so I've no idea, maybe 6k - 8k?

500.- per hour for tax advice?
We paid a guy 100.- to sit with us for an hour and just check the returns I'd already filled in.
So you will save 20% of that - maybe CHF1000 refund? I'd just go with it and claim it and see what happens and view it as a bonus if you get it

Dunno what the actual rates were - CHF500 is a bit overstated I think - CHF375 maybe? Ours was a bit complex and we got a tax lawyer rather than an accountant to do it. (It was because we own the shell of the building today but the people we bought it from are also doing the renovation and we needed to argue that it was seperate work rather than looking like it was buying a finished property - so it was more about arguing the law than assessing the numbers)
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Old 12.01.2012, 16:03
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Re: Home improvement and tax

It depends on that time table for replacement chart thingy that's out there. I don't think 5 year old tiles will give you the full deduction. But maybe you could get a percentage.
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Old 13.01.2012, 23:39
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Re: Home improvement and tax

If it is just the looks of the bathroom that you would like to change, you will not be able to get the deduction in your tax return. On the other hand, there is the 20% lump sum (20% from the Eigenmietwert -imputed rental value) that can be deducted anyway (if you do not want to list all the costs separately and, of course, if the deductible costs in total make less that this 20% lump sum).

But you can try anyway - if the tax office does not accept it, so be it. Maybe they will accept a partly deduction (it also sometimes depends on the tax officer who will process your tax return). In any case, you should keep all the receipts and invoices for later - once you would like to sell your house, depending on the case, you may need to pay a tax on the profit - then you can can deduct all the costs / expenses you incurred in "adding value" to the house.
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Old 13.01.2012, 23:44
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I'd doubt that they'd accept it then after only two years of use - arguing that it needs to be replaced for reasons of functionality or degradation will be difficult

Any idea how much it costs to do the work and how much you stand to gain?

Reason for asking is to balance the potential gain against the cost of advice. I was led to believe I could save A LOT on my current house build and burned EIGHT GRAND on tax advice, only to be told that I couldn't claim at all

Anyway - balance the cost of a tax advisor at CHF500 per hour against what you might save and see if its worth picking up the phone. But my gut-feel is that it would be a stretch
8k for nothing? You've been Switzerlanded!
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Old 13.01.2012, 23:58
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Re: Home improvement and tax

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I'd doubt that they'd accept it then after only two years of use - arguing that it needs to be replaced for reasons of functionality or degradation will be difficult

Any idea how much it costs to do the work and how much you stand to gain?

Reason for asking is to balance the potential gain against the cost of advice. I was led to believe I could save A LOT on my current house build and burned EIGHT GRAND on tax advice, only to be told that I couldn't claim at all

Anyway - balance the cost of a tax advisor at CHF500 per hour against what you might save and see if its worth picking up the phone. But my gut-feel is that it would be a stretch
It happened to us too. I had one tax adviser rip us off, one charging for his time to advise us about tax declarations and what receipts we needed to keep and what we could claim ect, when he knew very well we had L permits and wouldn't have to complete a tax declaration The bill added up so fast - and he was charging friends for answering their queries on his bills. He even offered to pick a friend up from the station, beause he said he was going that way anyway, and then billed them for it

Well...he forgot to send me the final bill...9 years ago now

On topic: damaged tiles can be replaced and claimed as an expense eg, if the grout isn't water tight or tiles are cracked. However, there is a flat amount of 20% (for place 10 plus years old) that can be deducted for repairs without actually doing anything - and replacing a few tiles isn't going to be more than the 20%, so you might as well claim the flat rate and pay to replace your tiles.
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Old 14.01.2012, 00:50
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Re: Home improvement and tax

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It happened to us too. I had one tax adviser rip us off, one charging for his time to advise us about tax declarations and what receipts we needed to keep and what we could claim ect, when he knew very well we had L permits and wouldn't have to complete a tax declaration The bill added up so fast - and he was charging friends for answering their queries on his bills. He even offered to pick a friend up from the station, beause he said he was going that way anyway, and then billed them for it

Well...he forgot to send me the final bill...9 years ago now

On topic: damaged tiles can be replaced and claimed as an expense eg, if the grout isn't water tight or tiles are cracked. However, there is a flat amount of 20% (for place 10 plus years old) that can be deducted for repairs without actually doing anything - and replacing a few tiles isn't going to be more than the 20%, so you might as well claim the flat rate and pay to replace your tiles.
is this 20% of the EmW? i.e. self rental value is 20k pa, so you can claim 4k of expense and assuming 30% tax rate, works out as 1.2k of tax reduction?
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Old 14.01.2012, 01:10
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Re: Home improvement and tax

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is this 20% of the EmW? i.e. self orental value is 20k pa, so you can claim 4k of expense and assuming 30% tax rate, works out as 1.2k of tax reduction?
yep. 20% of the rental value. property less than 10 years old is 10% can be expensed.
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Old 23.11.2020, 11:31
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Re: Home improvement and tax

Old thread, new question.

If work was done to bring sewage pipes up-to-code (the commune is asking all private owners to do this) and the insurance paid for some of it, which amount do I use for tax purposes?

Thanks.
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Old 23.11.2020, 11:34
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Re: Home improvement and tax

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Old thread, new question.

If work was done to bring sewage pipes up-to-code (the commune is asking all private owners to do this) and the insurance paid for some of it, which amount do I use for tax purposes?

Thanks.
The cost, less insurance payout.
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