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I'm working on filling out my U.S. income tax forms, and am confused by the mortgage interest credit. It seems more complicated than I remember it being last year (perhaps because it is? Or maybe my memory is just failing).

I see that I can fill out Form 8396 to deduct mortgage interest with a standard deduction, but this requires a qualified Mortgage Credit Certificate (MCC) [issued] by a state or local governmental unit or agency under a qualified mortgage credit certificate program.

My state of Kansas appears not to have such a program. Does this mean my only option for deducting mortgage interest is to do an itemized deduction?

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MCC is not a deduction, its a credit (a kind of "first home owner" credit). If you had it you would have noticed, you need to proactively get this certificate from your state government. If you're talking about the regular mortgage interest (form 1098), then you cannot deduct this if you're not itemizing.

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