Whether you’re someone who loves it or someone who hates it, tax season is an inevitable part of each and every year. Sure, it’s time consuming and it can get a little bit confusing, but it’s always worth the hassle when you know that there’s a refund check coming your way mid-spring. To make it even more worth the hassle, we did our research and compiled a list of purchases that can increase your tax refund. 

So, here are 10 purchases you didn’t know were tax-deductible: 



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Teaching materials 

Most teachers know the pain of having to shop for supplies throughout the year when the kits provided by the school are half empty and mostly broken. All those cute, tiny glitter glue sticks, colored pencils, and safety scissors can really add up, but if you’re a K-12 teacher, you can deduct up to $250 for materials to help ease the financial burden. Bonus deduction: if you’re married to another teacher, you have $500 to share on school supplies.  



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Medical and Dental expenses 

This is an incredibly practical and important deduction that many people aren’t taking advantage of. If these expenses accounted for more than 10% of your adjusted income the previous year, you can claim that amount as a deduction. If you don’t have insurance coverage in these areas, you may hit that number faster than you’d imagine. 



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Uncovered Losses 

If you experienced a casualty, disaster, or theft loss that was not covered by your insurance, you may be able to claim the loss as a tax deduction. 



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Charitable donations 

Not only can you receive a tax deduction for goods or monetary donations made to qualified charitable organizations (think bins of clothes you brought to Goodwill last year), but you can also get a deduction for any out-of-pocket expenses that you used for charitable work, as well. If you contribute baked goods to charity fundraisers, for example, deducting the ingredients that you used would be allowed. 



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Sales Taxes 

This one can get a little trickier, as you have to decide if you want to itemize your deduction or take the standard deduction. The sales tax itemization breakdown could come out in your favor if you made a big purchase last year, like a car or an engagement ring. Your accountant (in-person or online through tax services like H&R Block) can break it down to help you determine which one will save you more money. 



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Lifetime Learning 

Aside from the more common tax deductions for college students, the Lifetime Learning credit can also help save you money on education costs at any age. According to TurboTax, you can get up to $2,000 per year deducted, taking off 20% of the first $10,000 you spend on your education after high school. 



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Childcare Expenses

If you hire a babysitter to watch your little ones while you’re volunteering (without pay) for a charity, you can list this cost as a charitable contribution on your next tax return. 



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Self-employment Social Security 

If you’re self-employed, you already know the misfortune of having to pay the full 15.3% of your income to taxes for Medicare and Social Security that would typically be divided with your employer. Luckily, you can deduct the amount that your employer would be paying, which comes out to 7.65%. 



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Unusual Business Expenses 

This category is a fun one. Owning your own business opens up a world of possibilities, but who knew that you could deduct just about everything that you buy for that business? For example, you can get a tax deduction for freebies/gifts that you buy for employees and customers, up to $25 per person, and you can deduct the costs of a housekeeper or landscaper if you run your business out of your home office. 



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Home Renovations

Last but not least on the list is certain home renovations. You can’t deduct the zipline you installed in the backyard that comes to an end just over your (also brand new) pool, but you can deduct renovations that you made to accommodate medical disabilities, like a ramp to make your home handicap accessible.