Thanks to Shivangi Agrawal, CPA, for this list of common small business expenses that might be deductible on a tax return. (Note, however, that these do not apply to those who are paid wages on a Form W2).
➖ Office expenses, including rent, utilities, and supplies.
➖ Business travel expenses, including transportation, lodging, and meals.
➖ Equipment purchases, including computers, printers, and office furniture.
➖ Marketing and advertising expenses, including website development and social media advertising.
➖ Professional development and education expenses.
➖ Employee salaries and benefits.
➖ Health insurance premiums for small business owners and their employees.
➖ Home office expenses for those who work from home.
➖ Retirement plan contributions, including 401(k) and SEP plans.
➖ Insurance premiums, including liability and property insurance.
➖ Interest on business loans and credit cards.
➖ Depreciation of business assets, including vehicles and equipment.
➖ Bad debts and collection expenses.
➖ Legal and professional fees, including accounting and tax preparation services.
➖ State and local taxes, including sales tax and property tax.
➖ Business startup costs, including legal and accounting fees.
➖ Research and development expenses.
➖ Charitable contributions made by the business.
➖ Rent or lease payments for business property.
➖ Repairs and maintenance expenses.
➖ Licenses and permits required for the business.
➖ Telephone and internet expenses.
➖ Moving expenses related to the business.
➖ Costs of goods sold, including raw materials and inventory.
➖ Travel expenses for business conferences and events.
In most cases we want to tie the expense payment back to a bank statement and, for larger expenses, an actual electronic receipt when deducting these from income on a tax return. A program like QuickBooks installed on your cell phone makes expense receipt management easy.