As a small business owner, you can deduct certain expenses related to your business, but you cannot typically write off everything you buy for your business. The IRS allows deductions for “ordinary and necessary” business expenses, which are expenses that are common and accepted in your industry and are helpful and appropriate for your business.
Here are some common types of business expenses that you can typically deduct…
- Office Supplies – Expenses for items such as pens, paper, printer ink, and other office supplies used in your business.
- Equipment and Supplies – Expenses for purchasing or leasing equipment, machinery, tools, and supplies necessary for your business operations.
- Business Travel – Expenses for business-related travel, including airfare, lodging, meals, and transportation.
- Business Meals and Entertainment – Expenses for meals and entertainment that are directly related to the conduct of your business, subject to certain limitations and documentation requirements.
- Rent and Utilities – Expenses for renting office space, utilities, internet service, and other costs associated with operating your business location.
- Employee Salaries and Benefits – Expenses for employee wages, salaries, bonuses, and benefits, including health insurance and retirement contributions.
- Professional Services – Expenses for professional services such as accounting, legal, consulting, and other professional fees related to your business.
- Advertising and Marketing – Expenses for advertising, marketing, and promotional activities to attract customers and promote your business.
It’s important to keep accurate records and documentation of your business expenses to support your deductions in case of an IRS audit. There are specific rules and limitations for certain types of expenses, so it’s advisable to consult with a tax professional or accountant to ensure compliance with tax laws and maximize your allowable deductions.
While you can deduct many business-related expenses, personal expenses or expenses unrelated to your business generally cannot be deducted. It’s essential to distinguish between personal and business expenses and only deduct those expenses that are legitimately related to your business operations.