Mr. DeBord’s guest column was premature and misleading. The tax reform bills going through Congress are a long way from being finalized so his premise of what it will do has no basis. Congress is still considering a deduction of up to $10,000 in property taxes and interest deduction on mortgages up to $500,000 or more. Some deductions may continue once the Senate passes their bill and the The Senate and House bills are reconciled into a final bill.
He implies that if the standard deduction is doubled, far fewer homeowners will itemize, making their mortgage interest and property taxes no longer deductible. Assuming some deductions will end up in the final bill, each tax payer will have the same option that they have now of itemizing if that would give them a better result than taking the new doubled standard deduction.
Even if the deductions are eliminated, doubling the standard deduction may give most tax payers a larger deduction than they have now since the increase may more than offset the lost interest and property tax deduction. The only tax payers that might end up paying more would be the higher income that have huge mortgages and expensive homes.