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Subject:  Re: Writing off housepainting? Date:  5/28/2004  2:23 PM
Author:  wtam Number:  72020 of 132878

i too am looking to make some house improvements. the proposed "painting" cost - stripping, sanding, painting, etc. - are est at $8000 on a $200K home.

something that large wouldn't be added to cost basis? or more to the point, is there any legal way to change the character of the work to be more than maintenance? it seems maintenance or repairs that are nearly 5% of the house value would be more than a casual personal expense. if it is still personal expense, would the characterization change if the repairs added up to 20% or 50% of the initial cost of the house itself?

for example, if you buy a "fixer-upper", say a broken down shack for $50k, strip the wooden walls and paint, resand and varnish the hardwood floors, and the like...not adding a major addition to the house such as another wing, bedroom or bathroom but otherwise turn the fixer-upper into a like-new, renovated move-in ready home that can be sold for $200k, wouldn't all those "repairs" be added to the cost basis?

just trying to get a feel for where the line is drawn. thanks.
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