Get our Expense Tracker HERE!
What Counts As a Business Expense?

INCOME: This includes all UNTAXED income—1099-NEC, cash, check, Venmo, Zelle, PayPal, etc. 

Examples: flyers, postcards, business cards, website domain/design/hosting, headshots, and social media ads.

Examples: union dues, entry fees for contests, subscription software, and cloud storage.

INDEPENDENT CONTRACTORS: Other folks you paid to help you with your business or project.
Examples: managers, designers, movers, art handlers, and film editors.
[Did you pay one person $600 or more, read this article] 

BIG EQUIPMENT: Things that last a couple of years and cost over $400.
Examples: office furniture, computers, camera equipment, tablets.

INSURANCE: Any business-related insurance (not including health insurance premiums).
Examples: renter's insurance, equipment insurance, AppleCare.

Examples: lawyers, accountants, tax preparers (including Brass Taxes!), and business consultants.

Examples: printer ink, paper, notebooks, pens, envelopes, and planners.

RENT OR LEASE [NOT HOME OFFICE]: Space or equipment you rented, not including your home office.
Examples: car rental/Zipcar, rehearsal space, special equipment, venues, and recording studios.

REPAIRS: Did you pay to repair equipment you use for work? Include those expenses here. 

SUPPLIES: A catchall category for other business-related supplies you bought and will use up within the tax year.

TRAVEL: All non-food, non-commute, travel-related expenses. Examples: plane tickets, hotels, public transit. (A commute is regular travel between work and home.)

MEALS & ENTERTAINMENT: Meals you eat when traveling and also any business meals.

CELL PHONE:  What percentage of your cell phone use is for work?
Example: You pay $1,000 for your phone. Half of your cell use is for work. Your cell phone expense is $500.

INTERNET: Track the total amount YOU paid for the internet in your home. If you split the bill, you are only counting YOUR portion.

BOOKS & MAGAZINES: Anything you read to read to keep abreast of your field.  

PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENTExamples: classes, coaches, conferences.

RESEARCH: Research expenses will vary depending on your work.
Examples: streaming subscriptions, podcasts, Spotify, theater/movie/concert tickets.

DONATIONS: MONEY: Money donated to registered 501(c)(3) organizations.

DONATIONS: NOT MONEY: Goodwill, salvation army, etc. How much would it sell for at Goodwill? What's the full address of where it will be donated?

HEALTH INSURANCE PREMIUMS: Do you pay for your health insurance out of pocket? Include those expenses. [only if it wasn't offered by an employer]

HOME OFFICE RENT: The total amount of rent YOU paid.

HOME OFFICE: UTILITIES:  The total amount of utilities YOU paid.