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But depreciation does. So depreciation does not give one the same benefit as office supplies? All it seems to do for you is to lower your tax bill temporarily now, only to raise it later.

Let's try a little logic (not always applicable to tax code). Items which are depreciated, but no longer exist at the time of sale are not subject to recaptured depreciation. Over time rentals require maintanance: flooring, applicances, and especially areas with water require repair/replacement. Many of these items aren't deductible in the year bought, but must be depreciated over the life of the item and maybe replaced multiple times.

Only structures are depreciated. The value of the land is not depreciated. Their is an assumption that the land will appreciate enough to cover the loss of value of an older home. It doesn't always work that way.
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