2012 real estate taxes paid in 2013

My 2012 Real Estate taxes were paid in January of 2013 by my mortgage escrow.  Am I able to file this as a deduction on my 2012 taxes?  The guidance I am finding is conflicting.

When reading the "How do I qualify for the real estate tax deduction?" help on TurboTax it says "You can deduct only real estate taxes that you paid during the tax year regardless of the year they apply to."  This tells me I cannot use this deduction for 2012 taxes.

Treasury Regulations, Subchapter A, Sec. 1.164-1 says "(a) In general. Only the following taxes shall be allowed as a deduction under this section for the taxable year within which paid or accrued, according to the method of accounting used in computing taxable income:"  The fact that is says "taxes shall be allowed as a deduction... for the taxable year within which paid or ACCRUED" tells me I should be able to deduct the taxes paid in 2013 that were accrued in 2012.


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Good question.  Virtually all taxpayers are cash basis taxpayers.  What this means is that you cannot show accrued expenses, including real estate taxes, on your 2012 tax return.

Unfortunately, your escrow company left you without a tax deduction this year.  I think I would have a little "chat" with them.

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