The following is a list of typical expenses that you may be able to deduct.
- 50% of meals and entertainment expenses while traveling, or when entertaining business guests
- car and truck expenses or local transportation expenses, to inspect the property, collect rents, interview prospective tenants, or to call on contractors, suppliers, vendors, your insurance agent, etc; if you claim these expenses, be sure to report them on Form 4562, Depreciation and Amortization
- cleaning supplies
- credit check fees for tenants
- finance charges on a credit card used for business
- janitorial or cleaning service
- landscaping maintenance
- legal fees related to drawing up leases, resolving disputes with tenants or repair contractors, tax advice, etc.; however, legal fees incurred in connection with buying or selling the property are added to the property's tax basis
- local licenses, taxes, inspection fees, etc.
- miscellaneous repairs and maintenance
- rental fees for power tools, painting equipment, etc.
- safe deposit box rental, if you keep your deed, mortgage, or insurance policy there
- stamps, if you pay bills by mail
- tax return preparation, if you pay someone to complete your Schedule E, associated depreciation tax forms, etc.
- telephone calls, although you can't deduct any part of the first telephone line into your residence
Unfortunately, you cannot deduct the cost of your own labor if, for example, you paint a rental apartment or install a lock yourself instead of hiring a painter or a locksmith. However, if you hire a non-owner (such as your child or, possibly, your spouse), you can deduct the payments.
Remember that you must distinguish between repairs, which can be deducted in the year they are paid for, and improvements, which must be treated as a capital asset and depreciated over a time period that matches the class life of the asset.