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[[We bought a house in 12/96 and for the tax year of 1996, I just took a standard deduction as it
was greater than itemizing. (didn't itemize closing costs etc.) I was told that I can carryover these
closing costs in to the 1997 tax year.]]

I certainly don't know who provide you with this information, but they are sorely mistaken. Period expenses, such as mortgage interest, points, property taxes, etc. can not be "carried over" into a future year. Use 'em or lose 'em.

[[ In 1997 also I have to take a standard deduction as my mort.
interest and property taxes together are less than the standard deduction. Can I carryover these
closing costs to the following year?]]

Same situation. No carryover allowed.

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