TurboTax / Tax Calculators & Tips / All Tax Guides / Home Ownership / How to Deduct Mortgage Points On Your Tax Return

How to Deduct Mortgage Points On Your Tax Return

Updated for Tax Year 2015


OVERVIEW

If you ever decide to take the plunge and buy a new home, your mortgage will likely be the largest debt you'll ever take on. And as part of owning a home, you may be faced with fees in terms of mortgage points. However, paying mortgage points can sometimes make good financial sense, and you can often deduct points on your taxes.


What Are Mortgage Points?

mortgage points

A home mortgage point is equal to one percent of the amount of your loan. For example, if you have a $100,000 home loan, one point is the equivalent of $1,000. The home mortgage industry uses two types of points, origination points and discount points. Origination points are typically income for the loan originator, while discount points are a type of prepaid interest and are often fully deductible.

 

 

Qualifying for a Deduction

Generally, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) allows you to deduct the full amount of your points in the year you pay them. If the amount you borrow to buy your home exceeds $1 million, you are generally limited on the amount of points that you can deduct. The same is true if your home equity debt exceeds $100,000. The IRS also imposes the following requirements to deduct mortgage points:
• The mortgage must be used to buy or build your primary residence
• The points must be a percentage of your mortgage amount
• The use of points must be a normal business practice in your area
• The amount of points paid must not be excessive for your area
• You must use cash accounting on your taxes
• The points must not be used for items that are typically stand-alone fees, such as property taxes
• You cannot have borrowed the funds to pay for the points from the mortgage lender or broker
• The amount you pay must be clearly itemized as points on your statement

If you aren't able to deduct your points in the year you pay them, you may still qualify to deduct them over the life of the loan.

How to Deduct Points

As far as filing taxes goes, claiming a tax deduction for mortgage points is a fairly straightforward process. Mortgage points are considered an itemized deduction and are claimed on Schedule A of Form 1040. Here are the specifics:
• Usually, your lender will send you Form 1098, showing how much you paid in mortgage points and mortgage interest
• Transfer this amount to line 10 of Form 1040 Schedule A
• If any of your points were not included on Form 1098, enter the additional amount you paid on line 12 of Form 1040 Schedule A 

For many taxpayers, the process really is this simple. In some cases, though, calculating and deducting mortgage points can be tricky. With TurboTax, just answer a few simple questions and we can help you get the proper deduction for your mortgage points.

 

Benefits Add Up

On the surface, paying additional costs when trying to negotiate the best price for a home might not seem logical. But with many lenders, each discount point you pay up front results in a reduction of your loan rate, typically by 0.25%. For example, if you agree to a 4% mortgage, paying two points upfront might result in your loan rate dropping by 0.50%, to 3.5%. Adding in the benefit of deducting those points on your taxes, it could be the right financial move. Generally, the longer you intend to stay in your home, the more benefit you could get from paying mortgage points upfront and lowering your monthly interest rate. 

More Money Upfront

Part of the joy of looking for a home is finding the nicest one you can afford. However, some homebuyers overlook the effect mortgage points can have on home affordability. Mortgage points must be paid upfront, in addition to a down payment. If you've decided to buy a home where you can just barely make the down payment, paying additional money for mortgage points could be a deal breaker. Additionally, if you don't closely follow IRS rules, you may not qualify for a tax deduction.

Get every deduction you deserve

TurboTax Deluxe searches more than 350 tax deductions and credits so you get your maximum refund, guaranteed.

For only $54.99*
Start for Free

Looking for more information?

The above article is intended to provide generalized financial information designed to educate a broad segment of the public; it does not give personalized tax, investment, legal, or other business and professional advice. Before taking any action, you should always seek the assistance of a professional who knows your particular situation for advice on taxes, your investments, the law, or any other business and professional matters that affect you and/or your business.


Security is built into everything we do
Here's how
* Important Offer Details and Disclosures
  • Filing Deadline: IRS filing deadline for tax year 2015 is April 18, 2016 (except for residents of Massachusetts or Maine, where the IRS filing deadline for tax year 2015 is April 19, 2016).
  • Try for Free/Pay When You File: TurboTax online and mobile pricing is based on your tax situation and varies by product. Free 1040EZ/A + Free State offer only available with TurboTax Federal Free Edition; Offer may change or end at any time without notice. Actual prices are determined at the time of print or e-file and are subject to change without notice. Savings and price comparisons based on anticipated price increase expected 3/18/16. Special discount offers may not be valid for mobile in-app purchases.
  • TurboTax CD/Download products: Price includes tax preparation and printing of federal tax returns and free federal e-file of up to 5 federal tax returns. Additional fees apply for efiling state returns. E-file fees do not apply to New York state returns. Savings and price comparison based on anticipated price increase expected 3/18/16. Prices subject to change without notice.
  • Anytime, anywhere: Internet access required; standard message and data rates apply to download and use mobile app.
  • Fastest refund possible: Fastest tax refund with efile and direct deposit; tax refund timeframes will vary.
  • Pay for TurboTax out of your federal refund: A $X.XX Refund Processing Service fee applies to this payment method. Prices are subject to change without notice. This benefit is available with TurboTax Federal products except the TurboTax Home & Business/QuickBooks Self-Employed bundle offers.
  • About our TurboTax Product Experts: Customer service and product support vary by time of year.
  • About our credentialed tax experts: Live tax advice service is available via phone for your toughest tax questions; fees may apply. Service, experience levels, hours of operation and availability vary, and are subject to restriction and change without notice. Not available for TurboTax Business customers.
  • #1 best-selling tax software: Based on aggregated sales data for all tax year 2014 TurboTax products.
  • Most Popular: TurboTax Deluxe is our most popular product among TurboTax Online users with more complex tax situations.