You wrote, "Chapter 7 question. I have a house which I rent. I use to live there. As a result I can't declare the house as a business."
A: I suggest you are mistaken and that you are operating a business.
Get an attorney to take a look at this. I know in the central district of california, there are cases that say you can't do what you want to do here.
The above is general legal and business analysis. It is not "legal advise" but analysis, and different lawyers may analyse this matter differently, especially if there are additional facts not reflected in the question. I am not your attorney until retained by a written retainer agreement signed by both of us. I am only licensed in California. See also avvo.com terms and conditions item 9, incorporated as if it was reprinted here. Please visit my web site: www.avanesianlaw.com for more information about my services.
If you can't write off the expenses for tax purposes, your trustee will object to the expenses in a bankruptcy and you would either have to amend your petition to exclude the expenses, or you would have to appear at a hearing in front of the judge to argue the expenses. In the end, my guess is you would lose the argument. You should discuss this with an attorney.
The DiGiulio Law Firm, LLC.
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It is not clear what you are asking. If you own rental property you are required to list the income from that on the means test. You are also supposed to indicate the expenses incurred in generating that rental income over the prior 6 months. Yes this does effectively offset the gross income so that the calculation is based on the net. Like all information in your schedules it is subject to review by your trustee and ultimately by the judge. They may disagree with your assertions of expenses so be prepared to document them and to explain why those expenses were necessary in generating that income.