tax-1103675_1280Most of us are ok with paying our fair share of taxes – but no one likes paying more than they have to. We hear a lot about businesses and the very wealthy taking advantage of tax breaks, but many of us don’t realize that there are many ways that individuals can reduce their tax burdens as well. Here are some of the most overlooked tax deductions for common expenses that you could be missing!

Tax Preparation Fees

Did you know that you can deduct fees that you paid to an accountant to prepare your income taxes? This also applies to paid-for tax software programs. Just be sure to make this deduction in the same tax year.

Losses Due to Theft or Destruction

Many of us know that we can take a deduction against business losses, but did you know that you can also deduct losses caused by theft or destruction of your property? You can’t deduct the whole amount, but you can claim the difference between the value of the lost or damaged goods and the amount you received from any insurance policy on those goods.


Did you know that if you are travelling for business, you can claim deductions for laundry services? This is only allowed if your employer isn’t going to reimburse you.

Breastfeeding Equipment and Pumps

You probably know that you can make deductions against medical devices, but did you know that breastfeeding equipment and pumps are included in this category? Be sure to know what other devices you use which may qualify for a similar deduction.

Legal Fees for Income-related Services

If you find yourself having to hire legal assistance in order to recover or protect income, you are entitled to deduct a percentage of the legal fees. So, if you need to go to court to enforce an alimony order or respond to unlawful termination, be sure to make the allowed deduction!

Job-Hunting Costs

While you are on the hunt for a new job in your current profession be sure to hold on to receipts for any related expenses. Costs for printing your resume, consulting fees and employment agency fees may all be deductible. Note, this doesn’t apply to the hunt for your first job – but in that case, you may be able to claim moving expenses if you need to relocate to take your first job!

Hobby Expenses

You might think of your apple-pie stand at the local fair as just a hobby – or maybe you were trying to get it going as a business without much success this year. Either way, you can recoup the expenses of apples and other costs associated with your hobby.

Jury Duty

If you were required to serve on a jury, you probably received jury duty pay. If your employer continued to pay you while you were on jury duty, you can transfer your jury duty pay to your boss and claim that as a deduction from your taxes.

Protective Clothing

If your job requires that you wear protective clothing or equipment, the associated costs are deductible.

Student Loans

Students are now able to claim a portion of the interest paid on their student loans – even if they are not directly repaying the loan. If you are a student and your parents are helping you with the loan, you can claim a deduction against the interest as long as you are not being claimed as a dependent by your parents.

These deductions are just some of the many that you may be entitled to – do your homework, and save your money!