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A lot of people used the Standard Deduction in 2018, rather than Itemizing. You may also wonder, as a member of the clergy, “Does take the standard deduction mean we don’t have to track housing expenses in 2019?”

Unfortunately, the answer is no. Even if you used the Standard Deduction, you must still keep track of housing expenses for the housing allowance.

IRS limits your housing allowance to the lesser of three categories- your designated allowance, the fair rental value of the home, or the actual expenses you paid throughout the year. It is very important to keep track of your expenses and maintain the record so you can support your expenses, in the event that IRS ever examines the return. If you do not keep any record of your housing expenses, IRS could decide that your actual expenses are zero and set the allowance at zero.

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Clergy Financial Resources serves as a resource for clients to help analyze the complexity of clergy tax law, church payroll & HR issues. Our professionals are committed to helping clients stay informed about tax news, developments and trends in various specialty areas.

This article is intended to provide readers with guidance in tax matters. The article does not constitute, and should not be treated as professional advice regarding the use of any particular tax technique. Every effort has been made to assure the accuracy of the information. Clergy Financial Resources and the author do not assume responsibility for any individual’s reliance upon the information provided in the article. Readers should independently verify all information before applying it to a particular fact situation, and should independently determine the impact of any particular tax planning technique. If you are seeking legal advice, you are encouraged to consult an attorney.

For more information or if you need additional assistance, please use the contact information below.

Clergy Financial Resources
11214 86th Avenue N.
Maple Grove, MN 55369

Tel: (763) 425-8778 
Fax: (888) 876-5101
Email: clientservices@clergyfinancial.com