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bbooks49
New Member

Creating mother-in-law suite for our adult daughter, and rent.

We are buying a home with a finished basement. We intend to add a small studio-type kitchen and have our adult daughter live in the basement area. She will be helping with expenses on-going - about $400-$500 per month. Will this arrangement be considered "renting" for tax purposes? For both her purposes and ours, do we need to create an actual lease agreement and claim this as income on our taxes? Daughter will not have any ownership in the home.

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Accepted Solutions
DoninGA
Level 15

Creating mother-in-law suite for our adult daughter, and rent.

This would be a considered as family member paying their share of the expenses for the home, not a rental.

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4 Replies
DoninGA
Level 15

Creating mother-in-law suite for our adult daughter, and rent.

This would be a considered as family member paying their share of the expenses for the home, not a rental.

View solution in original post

bbooks49
New Member

Creating mother-in-law suite for our adult daughter, and rent.

Thank you for confirming. I'm reading through the IRS information, and that seems in line with what I read. We don't intend to claim any rental depreciation and the expenses she will be contributing will be less than the fair market value of renting a similar unit. So, it seems we can keep this a simple arrangement without any tax considerations. Thanks again!

Carl
Level 15

Creating mother-in-law suite for our adult daughter, and rent.

This could go either way. But based on the specifics you've provided, I would not treat this as a rental at all. I would look at it as a simple cost-sharing arraignment. Especially since it's your daughter we're talking about here. There are some things that need to be clarified though.

At $500 a month to your daughter, I have do doubt that does not come anywhere close to covering your monthly mortgage payment. But do not have your daughter make payments directly to you. Since this could go either way, let your daughter write the checks for the utilities so that she pays the utilities (up to $500 a month) directly. DO NOT have or let your daughter make any part of the mortgage payment or property taxes. If audited, the IRS *could* see that as reportable income on *your* tax return.

Another way to approach this is as a gift. One taxpayer can give a gift of a maximum of $15K per year to another taxpayer, and neither taxpayer has to report this gift at all. At $500 a month that would be $6K a year which is well under the gift reporting threshold. Just have your daughter make all payments directly to you. Sine there is blood relation here, this would be the method I would suggest you use.

bbooks49
New Member

Creating mother-in-law suite for our adult daughter, and rent.

Thanks for your reply. There is no longer a mortgage. The house is paid off. It sounds like the easiest arrangement is to consider it a gift, since it would be well under the limit.

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