Buying a property to use as an office

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My partner and I are moving to the city soon (Burlington VT) and are going to be house hacking in a fairly small apt on one side of a duplex we are going to purchase. 

We currently have a home office in our house, but when we move, the apt will be a bit too small. I know a lot of people that can just work from their laptop at the kitchen table, but we have an energized 2 year old and I'm much more productive if I have a little space for an office. 

My partner is a massage therapist and rents an office to work on her clients. When we move, the amount she will have to pay for rent will most likely double to about $120/day. She may work 2 or 3 days a week, adding up to about $960 - $1440 per month. 

My thought is to buy a small property with a few bedrooms, maybe a small kitchen, within cycling distance of where we will live. She can use one room as her office and I can use one as mine. To make it a bit fun we could have little parties there sometimes or let relatives stay in one of the extra rooms.

I was wondering if there are any tax benefits to doing this? Or ways to look at this as an office hack? Maybe less benefits than a traditional rental property? Would it be legal to charge my partner rent? We aren't married but live together with our son. We don't share a bank account but technically don't differentiate between my money and hers.

 Technically this wouldn't be a home office right? Because it isn't my home, but I will own the building. There is also the idea to rent out a room as an office to another person as well.

Trying to find info on this question online has been tough, so I thought I'd ask all of you!


Not all professionals lease the commercial space they are working in. Professionals do own the assets and even rent out extra space to other businesses/tenants. There is nothing wrong if you do it too. Being in a residential space will definitely save you on property tax margins oppose to commercial at least initially. If your partner puts a sign out up front where its visible then locals might change usage of property from residential dwelling to commercial business so keep that in mind.. Not much different to residential rental as this is just a small scale business