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Comparing your itemized deductions to the average

The IRS has released preliminary data from 2011 of the average itemized deductions per blocks of income levels.  Check out the table below to see how you compare.

 

 

Here are some things to keep in mind while analyzing the data:

  1. The total column includes miscellaneous itemized deduction and theft & casualty losses
  2. The averages for taxes paid include states without an income tax who elected to deduct state sales tax
  3. In 2011 only medical expenses above 7.5% of AGI were deductible

There is a misconception that having above average itemized deductions will automatically subject taxpayer to audit.  Only in some cases is this true.  The IRS takes into account things like higher deductions for taxes paid in states with higher income taxes and will match mortgage interest to the 1098 forms from lenders.  If you are concerned or have questions please make sure to consult your tax preparer and make sure you hold on to your records for the recommended amount of time.  For the IRS recommendation on the length of time to keep records click here.

 

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