Your Home Office
There are a few strings attached here. Using your kitchen table or bedroom to make work calls or send work emails won’t qualify you for a home office deduction.
However, if there is a space in your home that you regularly and exclusively use for work and that area is your primary place for doing business, then it’s possible you could take some of your house’s expenses off your taxable income total.
Your Legal & Professional Fees
Here’s another handy one. Under this heading are lawyers, accountants, bookkeepers, tax preparers, and other legal and professional services you might engage in to run your business. In order to qualify, the expense has to be entirely work-related–if you got help with a personal parking ticket that particular fee will need to be sorted out. But otherwise, this could be a source of a nice deduction for many small businesses.
Your Advertising Spending
From social media promotion to event sponsorship to circulars, there are many ways small businesses advertise today, and most of them are deductible. This would include not only the money spent on materials themselves, but also the cost of hiring talent to design them.
The one area that is strictly verboten is political advertising. If your business sponsored a rally, used funds to lobby legislation, or used politics as an advertising vehicle in other ways, chances are you’ll still need to count that in your total.
Your Bank & Credit Card Fees
Well, not your bank and credit card fees. But if you have separate accounts and cards for your small business than the monthly fees or annual charges they incur can be deducted. Included in this category are the fees charged by third party processors, like PayPal. A good argument for keeping your business and personal life very separate!
Your Continuing Education
If you’re going to night school to start a new career, then you’re out of luck as far as small business deductions are concerned.
However, if you’ve taken workshops, attended seminars and webinars, or paid subscriptions to trade publications specifically to increase your skills and expertise in your business, you could possibly deduct the cost from your taxable income. You can even deduct the transportation costs too and from those learning experiences. But again, keep in mind that any educational material or activity must directly maintain or improve your ability to run your particular business.
Bonus: Green Vehicle Tax Credit
If your business needed to purchase a car or expand their fleet this year and chose to go electric, you could be looking at a large tax credit. Depending on the size and battery capacity, a green vehicle could take between $2,500 and $7,500 off what you owe Uncle Sam. Be sure to check out state and federal incentives for more information.
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