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How to write off Raw/Vacant Land in a business as a contractor/landscaper?

I am a landscape designer in Marin county California and I own Mystical Landscapes which is a landscape design and installation company.  I need to know of ways to write off Raw/Vacant Land in a business as a contractor and as a landscaper.  I have recently purchased a vacant land for myself and I need to know if there is a way to write it off on my business to save on taxes.


Thanks for your question.

Land, unlike buildings and other assets, do not depreciate. Therefore the cost must be included on the books as an asset and cannot be written off or otherwise depreciated.  When sold, the cost becomes cost of goods sold and is "written off" at that point.

Hope this helps.

John Stancil, CPA  

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John Stancil, CPA


I can answer questions on personal income taxes, partnerships, and some corporate income taxes. I can deal with some state tax questions. Limited gift and estate tax questions. I am also familiar with ministerial and church tax reporting issues. I am Professor Emeritus at Florida Southern College. Sales taxes and property taxes are state and local issues so I am not likely be be able to give you an in depth answer on those types of taxes. I have maintained a CPA practice, specializing in tax, for over 35 years. I am a member of the National Association of Tax Professionals, The Florida Insititute of CPA's, The NCPE Fellowship. In addition I am a Certified Mentor for SCORE. Visit my website at I also offer seminars and consultations to churches and clergy on their tax issues at Also visit my blog, I am listed on Tax Connections at Prepare and file your own taxes at


I hold a doctorate in Accounting, and am a CPA. My certifications of CIA, CFM, and CMA are inactive. I passed all certification examinations on the first attempt, and received honorable mention for my scores on the CIA exam. I have operated a CPA firm for over 37 years and have taught accounting and tax at the college level for over 35 years.

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