An appreciation of depreciation

I like to pay taxes. I like filling out the forms.

My dad taught me to do taxes. Some dads teach their sons to fix cars.  My dad taught me to fix taxes. He even kept two sets of books: one pencil, one ink.

Those self-made guys — like my dad — they were fun.

The second-generation, like me, usually went legit.

I got audited once. I didn’t take an accountant with me. I left with a credit.  What a great day.

I’m a landlord, so I handle some cash — rents, security deposits. That’s why I got audited.

I like keeping records. This is the age of documentation and investigation. I figure, Why not enjoy it?

About the Author
Bert Stratton is a musician and landlord in Cleveland, Ohio. He is an occasional contributor to the New York Times, Jerusalem Post, Cleveland Plain Dealer and City Journal. Byliner chose his essay "The Landlord's Tale" as one of the best magazine articles of 2012. He blogs at "Klezmer Guy: Real Music & Real Estate."