Working From Home: Finances

Submitted by CCCL_DouglasT

Telecommuting, teleworking, remote work: it’s all working from home. Prior to COVID, it was already the fastest growing segment of work. There are some challenges that must be faced for those who work from home, the first of which is finances.

Generally, the two financial challenges working from home are outlay for supplies, such as your computer, chair, desk, etc., and figuring taxes. Many states require employers to reimburse their working-from-home employees for reasonable expenses. In California that is covered in the CA Labor Cod 2802.  When you start working from home, ask your employer immediately for the reimbursement policy, any necessary forms, and start keeping receipts. In places where working-from-home expenses are not covered, many find it more expensive to work from home. Some of these expenses are related to supplies, while some may be attributable to extra utility expenses. 

Taxes are can be another challenge when working from home. In 2017 the Tax Cut Act eliminated the home office deduction for employees, but not the self-employed.  There are some high-quality legal resources available through Contra Costa County Public Law Library (CCCPLL) that I recommend you explore.  One is the Reference Tools and Finding Aids which contains NOLO Press books on almost any law topic you can think of.   

Finally, you want to shield yourself financially, and that is also covered by the database through the CCCPLL. For a very informative and brief course on how business-structure choices may affect you, try this course from Lynda Library.