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In FL, we have no state income tax, so we are able to claim a sales tax deduction on our federal return. The IRS allows you to take a base amount from a table based on your income and then add in further amounts for "major purchases" made during the year. Major purchases can include vehicles, boats, building materials, etc.

We replaced all of the windows in our house in 2006, to the tune of ~$16k. On our contract, a single dollar amount was quoted for the entire job. We called the contractor's office and asked for a breakdown of materials, labor, and tax. The secretary who is handling our request said they don't add tax to their contracts. Huh? What?

Under state (FL) law, they have to collect/pay sales tax when they sell me something, right? I presume that the contract price is simply inclusive of tax, and she was just confused. Maybe they don't add tax on top of the contract, because it's already included in the price? Am I missing something?

If I get a breakdown telling me the actual material cost, should I just work backwards from that number to calculate the tax portion? At the same time, what if they didn't pay sales tax on the sale, even if they were supposed to? BTW, this isn't some fly-by-night contractor. It's a local, well-established company with a stellar reputation.

What would you do in this scenario? If the materials are $12k of the total, the sales tax portion is $680, meaning a difference of ~$175 on my tax bill.
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