How can I claim my working from home electricity expenses on my tax return?

How can I claim my working from home electricity expenses on my tax return?

For the 2019–20 income year, there are three ways of calculating home office expenses depending on your circumstances as tax deductible expenses on your tax return. The methods are the:

Shortcut method (80 cents) – only available 1 March to 30 June 2020 (Note: this method can also be used during the period from 1 July 2020 to 30 September 2020 but that period that will fall into the 2020–21 income year). You can claim a deduction of 80 cents for each hour you worked from home in the 2019–20 income year during the period 1 March to 30 June 2020 as long as you:
- were working from home to fulfil your employment duties and not just carrying out minimal tasks such as occasionally checking emails or taking calls
- incurred additional running expenses as a result of working from home.

Fixed rate method (52 cents) - You can claim a deduction of 52 cents for each hour you work from home for the work-related expenses you incur for additional running expenses. To use this method, you need to have a dedicated work area, such as a home office when you work from home. 
To claim the work-related portion of these expenses you must have records such as:
- receipts or other written evidence that shows the amount spent on expenses and depreciating assets you purchased
- phone accounts identifying your work-related calls and private calls to work out your percentage of work-related use for a representative period
- a diary that shows a representative four-week period of your usual pattern of working at home
- any small expenses ($10 or less) that you can't get a receipt for totalling no more than $200
- your work-related internet use
- the percentage of the year you used depreciating assets exclusively for work.

Actual cost method - Under the actual expenses method, you can claim the additional running costs you directly incur as a result of working from home. This may include the following expenses:
- electricity and gas for cooling, heating and lighting
- the decline in value of home office furniture (desk, chair) and furnishings,
- the decline in value of phones, computers, laptops or similar devices
- phone expenses
- internet expenses
- cleaning (if you use a dedicated area for working)
- computer consumables and stationery – such as ink


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