Here we are, another year and another tax season for the majority of us. For some, its a blessing for this time of the year since we’re able to file taxes and get our returns for the previous year. For others, its a time of paying the government what we owe them.
And although it seems like a pain-staking process to see our money go right out of our pockets and its the pockets of the government, we had to figure it was coming. The government wants their cut and so we have to comply without asking any questions. But in either case, we (as in us home business owners or even small business owners) have a right to save SOME money at least.
That’s why I’ve compiled five things that you can write off this tax season to save a few bucks from switching pockets.
Just in case you don’t know, I’m referring to tax write-offs. These are simple “tax deductions” that you can write off half of from what you owe the government. For instance, if you use your vehicle for both pleasure and business, its considered a write off from my understanding. But you can only write off half of it. So if you spent $1,500 in gas in 2008, then you can write off $750.00 is what I was told.
Before proceeding any further, I just want to make it known that I’m not an expert in the tax industry, ‘nor am I a Certified Public Accountant or any accountant for that matter. Therefore, its highly suggested you speak with your own personal financial assistant. Or speak with a tax professional at your local H R; Block, Jackson Hewitt or any other tax speciality agency.
Okay, so here are five common things to consider writing off from your taxes, ASSUMING they are used for your business.
1. Rent/Mortgage Payments
Since a lot of people conduct business out of their home, a part of their home can be considered a “business expense.” Therefore in this case, rent and mortgage payments can be half written off. Once again, I am not sure if this is the definitive way to write off your home as I’ve also heard that your can only write off the square footage of your home that is used for your business.
As always, consult a tax professional about how you can write off your home payments.
2. Traveling Expenses
Do you travel often as part of your business operations. Why not write off your travel expenses? This would include your hotel stays, airline tickets, food, entertainment, etc.
This can also include your vehicle and vehicle insurance as well. Not to mention, tolls can be used as write offs assuming you have the toll receipts so don’t forget to ask for one the next time you go through a toll.
3. Phone and Internet
If you use your home telephone as part of your business operations then your phone is considered a tax write off as well. Same goes with your internet, it is considered a tax write off should it be used as part of your business operations. Once again, if its used half for pleasure and have for business, then only “half” can be written off.
4. Entertainment Expenses
If you take out your business clients for a little bit of entertainment, then consider it a write off. I’m not completely sure if this is considered a full write off or half write off, so consult a tax professional to confirm which it may be.
5. Office Supplies
Paper, printer, computer, fax machine, etc. All these things can be considered office supplies and are (to the best of my knowledge) tax write offs. So the next time your in Staples, Best Buy, Circuit City, etc. Consider these as tax write offs once you purchase.
So there you have it, 5 common tax write offs to consider when filing your taxes.
Once more I am not a professional so therefore, consult with an accountant or tax professional before jumping into the write offs situation. You’ll be glad you did at the end and will even save a few dollars.