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2. Why am I forced into taking the standard deduction of 24,000 when last yearmy taxable income was lowered over 60,000 by deductions?

why is the total so much less than last year? I entered the same amount of itemized deductions. 

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2. Why am I forced into taking the standard deduction of 24,000 when last yearmy taxable income was lowered over 60,000 by deductions?

Are you Married Filing Separately, and did your Spouse claim Standard?

2. Why am I forced into taking the standard deduction of 24,000 when last yearmy taxable income was lowered over 60,000 by deductions?

Several thoughts:

1. There are no more Personal Exemptions (deductions) of $4,050 per person.

2. Do not confuse Schedule A (personal) deductions with Schedule C (business) ones.  Only Schedule A ones are compared to the Standard deduction to see which is higher.

3. Under the new tax law, the Schedule A deduction for State/Local/Sales/Property tax combined is capped at $10,000.

4. Mortgage interest is limited, depending upon its use.

5. If claiming Mortgage Interest, be sure to say that the mortgage is secured by the property.

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