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Business News/ Money / Personal Finance/  Can rent allowance be claimed for more than one property?
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Can rent allowance be claimed for more than one property?

It is important to note that the income tax department may scrutinize your HRA claim if you are claiming it for multiple properties

HRA exemption is allowed under section 10(13A) of the Income Tax Act. (iStockphoto)Premium
HRA exemption is allowed under section 10(13A) of the Income Tax Act. (iStockphoto)

I am renting a house in Mumbai and my parents live in another rented property. I am paying the rent for both houses and have the agreement and rent receipts. Can house rent allowance (HRA) be claimed for multiple properties?

—Name withheld on request

HRA exemption is allowed under section 10(13A) of the Income Tax Act. Further, Rule 2A of the Act stipulates the conditions to be satisfied to claim HRA exemption. One of the conditions given in Rule 2A is: the allowance must be specifically granted to the employee by his employer to meet expenditure actually incurred on payment of rent in respect of residential accommodation occupied by the assessee.

Accordingly, the HRA exemption will be available only in respect of the rented residential accommodation occupied by you and therefore you will be able to claim HRA benefit only for rent paid in respect of your residence and not for the accommodation rented out for your parents, even if the rent for that is also being paid by you.

The amount of HRA that you can claim is limited to the lowest of the following: the actual HRA received from your employer, 50% of your basic salary (40% if you are living in a metro city) and excess of the actual rent paid over 10% of your basic salary.

For example, if your basic salary is 50,000 per month (50% of basic salary: 25,000), and you receive 20,000 per month as HRA and you pay 30,000 per month as rent ( 25,000 over and above the 10% of your salary), then your HRA exemption will be 20,000 as it is the lowest of the three amounts. For the financial year, this would work out to be 2.4 lakh

Please note that the HRA exemption is a deduction from your taxable income. This means that the lower your taxable income, the lower your income tax liability will be.

It is important to note that the income tax department may scrutinize your HRA claim if you are claiming it for multiple properties. Therefore, it is important to maintain proper documentation and ensure that you are eligible to claim HRA for both properties.

You will need to submit the following documents to your employer: rent agreements for both properties, rent receipts for both properties, declaration form from your employer stating that you have not claimed HRA for both properties simultaneously.

Amit Bhachawat is chief financial officer of India Mortgage Guarantee Corporation

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Published: 27 Sep 2023, 10:25 PM IST
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