The Recreation Vehicle Industry Association touts recreational vehicles, including travel trailers, as lower-cost alternatives to other forms of travel. As a vehicle and a living quarter, your travel trailer can also yield you tax savings in the form of itemized deductions.
Mortgage Interest Deduction
The interest on a travel trailer loan qualifies for the mortgage interest deduction if the trailer is your main or second home. A trailer with a toilet, sleeping quarters and a kitchen qualifies as a home. The trailer must be collateral for the loan. If it's your second home, you can rent it out and keep the deduction if you use it for at least 15 days. You claim the mortgage interest deduction as an itemized deduction on Schedule A of Form 1040.
You can write off the sales tax on the trailer. Base your deduction on the smaller of the actual rate for the trailer or the general sales rate. You must choose between the sales tax and the state and local government income tax deduction. The deduction for sales tax is an itemized deduction that you claim on line 5 of Schedule A of Form 1040.
Personal Property Taxes
Local government taxes and fees tied to your trailer's value are deductible. Fees based on the vehicle's weight or classification and fees for registration don't qualify. You report the deduction for taxes on the value of the trailer, along with other vehicles and personal property, on line 7 of Schedule A of Form 1040.
- IRS: Publication 936 -- Home Mortgage Interest Deduction
- IRS: Instructions for Schedule A (Form 1040) -- Itemized Deductions
- Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles: Vehicle Registration Fees
- The Recreational Vehicle Industry Association: RV Types & Prices
- The Recreational Vehicle Industry Association: Business Indicators
- Kiplinger: The Most-Overlooked Tax Deductions