Business Business Taxes Tax Tips

Best Tax Deductions for Self-Employed

Being your own boss is a dream a lot of people strive for. You have independence from a structure of a corporate environment. You get to manage your own time and your resources as well. 

You deal with your clients, and you come up with an agreement of what can be expected off of each other without having to work under the client’s management.  

Chances of earning more are high because companies will hire you for your skills that they need for a certain time. It is not a longtime commitment, so in the long run, companies get to save on overhead. 

You book your  own clients, you earn your own income and you manage your own affairs. Taxes included. 

While you get to earn more profit, you may not be able to enjoy some things that are enjoyed by folks, who are connected to companies. This could include benefits like health insurance, vacation leave. There is also the security of tenure and the most strenuous of all—taxes. 

Since you work for yourself, you will have to pay taxes through individual income tax and if you are not guided well, you will have to pay a hefty amount of money in taxes.  

That is why, when you can, you should claim every business  tax deductions that you qualify for. This way, you can gain back what you have spent and it will become an income for your small business. 

Credit card fees, maintenance of a business property, buying office supplies are some of the tax deductible expenses as they are all business-related.

What are the business expenses that you can write off as tax deductible?


 Home office deduction 

If you work from home, your home is considered your office. Your place of business. Make sure that you prepare a diagram of your office space at home, so that you could show it should the IRS asks. 

The office space and other expenses that a business incurs if it had a real office, are deductible as well. These include: utilities, the mortgage, even the depreciation and the property tax. 

The size of the home office is also proportional to what is deductible from the electricity bill. 

Which means that if your office occupies half your pad, then the deductible from your electric bill is also 50 percent. 

 Internet and telephone bills 

You can deduct your business telephone bill from your taxes and this includes the Internet usage as well. However, it gets a little tricky because you will be using the same line for personal use and not just for business. Make sure you declare the approximate time you spend on the Internet for work and the time spend using the phone and only deduct those. 

However, if you have a separate line for business, then you can deduct that 100 percent from your tax. 

 Health Insurance 

Since you do not have a corporate insurance, you will have to purchase it yourself. Although it comes at a much more expensive price, the good thing about that is it is tax deductible. These include health, dental and long-term care. Most importantly you can also deduct those insurance plans that you purchase for your spouse and your children who are younger than 27 at year-end. 


It can be assumed that you go out on meals to meet with client, entertaining a potential business partner or when you are traveling for business. Fifty percent of the meal’s actual cost can be tax deductible. 

IRS, however, wants you to keep all receipts and records and you must be able to present, records of who you were meeting, what went on during the meeting, when and where it happened and what the reason for your trip was. 

The IRS will. however. question you if your meals were too expensive. 


You can’t go on a backpacking vacation to Western Europe, hand out business cards and let it pass for a business trip. 

 It must last more than an eight-hour day and must be outside the vicinity of your home office. 

If you claim this to be a tax deduction, you need to have mapped out a business plan ahead of time and you are able to find new customers and have met clients. Keep these records and show this to the IRS, who are strict when it comes to this. 

For legitimate business trips, your transportation (air fare, cab, car rental, bus or subway) are deductible as well as your hotel stay and, of course, the meals.  

 It is wise to note that travel expenses are 100 percent deductible but meals is on 50 percent. 

Again always keep it at a minimal cost, because extravagant meals or accommodations will make the IRS ask questions. 


It is only tax deductible when you enrolled in classes that are closely related to your line of business. Enrolling in an auto cad class to further enhance your architects skills or taking up classes in Photoshop to help out a freelance photographer. The costs for these classes are tax deductible. 

Enrolling to be a licensed scuba diver for someone running a pool cleaning business is definitely not tax deductible. 


If you paid to advertise your business, the cost for that are tax deductible 

The ads could be in the form of  ads on social media like Facebook and Instagram, Google ads, on different website and even on the traditional medium like TV and billboard are all tax deductible as well. 

Always remember when filing for your income tax deductibles, that the expenses you claim really are business-related. The IRS can be strict and will most likely audit you if you have questionable claims. 

But if it qualifies, then by all means, claim it. This is one way of  minimizing cost and putting some back into your coffers. 

What are the business expenses that are not tax-deductible?

The 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs eliminated a few of the self-employed tax deductions. One of these is the entertainment expenses. Keep in mind that the IRS did away with the entertainment deductible. Some businessmen say that they take their clients out to watch NBA finals or a Broadway show. This is no longer acceptable. The law, however, is said to have affected small businesses. 

Consult our Tax Experts - Stop My IRS Bill




Top Things You Should Never Say to Clients

Whether you are a business owner or an entry level personnel, who deals with customers  directly, it is important to note that words can make or break a business. 

 Building a  good relationship with clients is the key to a successful business. 

 This relationship takes forever to build but it only takes one tiny mistake, like mispronouncing a client’s name for instance, or cursing, to ruin it.  

 Not only will it jeopardize your reputation, but also your business’s reputation. And worse,  it might discourage future clients as well. 

 Slip-ups are inevitable. But it never hurts to be on a lookout for things or words that you could very well avoid. The future of your business, after all, lies on this. 

 So what are the top things that you have to be careful about when talking to clients 



“Yes that is very doable 100 percent” seems like a bit of a stretch when what you actually mean is “If things go as planned and we will not encounter any unforeseeable obstacles, then we expect the service to be delivered as promised.”  

When speaking with clients, never promise them that you will deliver something that you yourself know is impossible. Give your clients the real scenario and give them realistic expectations rather than promising them the moon and never living up to the promise. If this happens, clients will come to distrust you. Underpromise and overdeliver is more like it. If you exceed expectations, then you will get plus points. Impressing clients mean you gain their trust and it could later on lead to more referrals and that is always good for business. 


Sometimes, clients come to you with issues either about a product, a service or a business deal. Remember, we always want our clients to feel that they are important. Telling them ‘It’s no big deal’ will give them the impression that you could not care less about their problems. The fact that they came to you about these issues mean that it is a big deal to them.  

 So instead of belittling their problems, show them that their concerns are also your concerns and that you understand and offer a solution.  

Instead of ‘it’s no big deal’ say instead, ‘I totally understand your concern, maybe we could do this.” 


Before meeting up with clients or potential clients, make sure you are 100 percent sure about how their names are  pronounced, what their designation are and most importantly, their company’s names. 

This is especially helpful especially if their names are foreign-sounding. 

Pronouncing their names wrong will come off as disrespectful and it might lead your clients out the door. 

Do a little background about their company as well. Once they see that you did a research about them shows that you are interested and that they are important enough for you to spend time to find things about them. 



Sometimes an issue raised is not under your control jurisdiction. Never tell a client to talk to another person because it is not your problem. 

Once a concern is raised, take it to heart. Apologize profusely and take full responsibility of the problem and right away offer a solution to the problem. 

You can say, “I apologize for the inconvenience and I will do everything that I can to help you resolve this issue right away.” 

This way, you maintain your client’s trust. 


Always keep it professional. Your clients are the clients and not your friends. Deal with them in a professional manner. If you need to get hold of them online, you may use the company’s official Facebook account, not your personal page. There are also other means like the professional network on LinkedIn. 


Avoid curse words at all cost. Not only does cursing reflect badly on your person but it also makes people lose respect for you, the company your represent and even your family. We tend to curse when we are frustrated. If this happens, try taking a long breath before saying anything, lest you offend you client after letting out a curse word. 


Not even your workmate who may have committed a mistake. Never do this especially if it does not involve your client. Talking crap about someone shows bad form. Always show your client that you are an upstanding person and a person he or she can rely on to do business with and not someone who could possibly also talk behind his or her back. 


In dealing with clients, speaking appropriately is as important as chatting or texting appropriately. Communication isn’t only limited to talking on the phone or in person. There are a lot of other means to communicate these days thanks to technology. There’s e-mail exchanges, text messages, chats on Viber and Skype among other. Always keep in mind that you are not talking to a friend over your high school crush. You are talking to a client. Keeping it professional would mean that you chat or text in complete sentences and do not use abbreviations as much as possible.  


Words like, “Yeah, my company sucks,” or “I know that our policy is terrible,” will send clients or potential clients running for the hills. You need to remember that when you deal with clients, you are representing your company. If you are saying things against your company in front of your client, it goes out to show that you are not trustworthy as you do not even believe in your own company’s goals and rules.

If the client questions your company’s rules, you could always say, “It is in our best desire to serve our clients in that manner 

Words are powerful. And if you are not careful, it could lead to your downfall. 

Always choose your words carefully and think once, think twice before talking to the client. It is important to maintain a healthy working relationship with a client in order to keep your business going. 





How to spend cryptocurrency for your business

With cryptocurrency growing in popularity, what can you spend on to make some improvements to your business? Let’s take a look at how this cryptocurrency investment method can give your enterprise a leg up on your competitors.

Employees who travel often can avail some amenities

Some online agencies accept Bitcoin. can help you book a flight or a hotel, even avail of car rentals. Expedia accepts Bitcoin for hotel bookings as well. Gyft and eGifter allow you to use Bitcoin for gift cards on websites like or other airlines. CoinFuel has gift cards for Uber and even gas stations.

Upgrade with the latest gadgets

An online retailer like Newegg accepts Bitcoin as payment for phone systems, computers, printers, and network solutions. Please make sure that you’re dealing directly with Newegg to secure your purchases and be informed of certain limitations. You’ll soon be spiffing up your work area in no time.

Level up with the latest software

Bitcoin has a become a payment option for Microsoft around the year 2014, but it was subsequently taken down, then recently put back in 2017. Add Bitcoin to your Microsoft account and browse through the Windows app store. If it’s not available there, look into Newegg or eGifter to procure a gift card so you can secure that Office 365 subscription. Equip your employees with the latest technology and watch your productivity soar.

Have an office makeover might just have what you need to bring that modern touch to your corporate surroundings. They might have the latest in furniture or electronics, even mailing supplies that every small business requires.

Be one with the cloud

Everyone is looking at the cloud as the future of data storage. If you can find a way to expand your database and store it in a safe place, that would be crucial for your business needs. BitHost could be an option with its’ affiliation to cloud computing company DigitalOcean. By using your cryptocurrency to set up in this secure space, your virtual presence gets more insured and assured.

Prepare more safeguards for your business against possible liabilities

Bitcoin may not be the first payment choice for most legal firms but it has been growing in acceptance with newly established ones. With legal advice quite necessary for your business operations to remain effective, cryptocurrency spent for this need is a very wise choice. Research on several international law establishments that can take in Bitcoin as part of their legal fees. You’ll be glad to have done your homework on this.

Account for everything in order to know what’s happening

HappyTax and The Crypto CPAs are just some examples of accounting services that can be compensated with Bitcoin. Without the proper accounting system in place, your company’s finances are in dire straits. By retaining the expertise of these accountants, they can guide you on just how your income and expenses are performing. In 2017, Ernst & Young, a world-renowned accounting group, has already accepted Bitcoin as a payment option. When you are able to grasp where your money is going, then your business success or failure can be determined. Do not skimp on this very integral part of your enterprise.

Be in the know

eGifter can get you an Amazon gift card with Bitcoin. Why not subscribe to the Harvard Business Review or Investor’s Business Daily. An iTunes gift card purchased through eGifter or Gyft can provide you with relevant programs connected to your industry. Newspapers and other news outlets have not fully bought into the cryptocurrency option. By having this information readily available, you’ll have the data you need to keep your ship set on the right course. Don’t fear that an iceberg will magically appear to sink your aspirations. Have the advantage of the radar which sends you correct information on what obstacles may lie ahead. When you are able to avoid these, then you’ll be more than able to keep your business afloat.

Keep your pantry or break room well stocked

There’s no denying that a well-fed army will  always make you win the war. The last thing you want to happen is to have your employees fainting from hunger and feeling quite a bit undernourished. A satisfied stomach has always been that ever reliable morale booster.

Try asking around which food establishments in your area are open to accepting cryptocurrency. Whole Foods gift cards can again be bought online through eGifter or Gyft. Your fridge will be well stocked and your employees will be smiling a whole lot more since starvation has been abated from their workspace. Even fast food chains and well-known brands are leaning towards this Bitcoin trend.

Give back to your community

Corporate social responsibility should always be practiced. When you play the part of a good neighbor, then the more your neighborhood will appreciate you. It doesn’t hurt to verify which charitable institutions accept Bitcoin. You’re not only out to do a good deed just to improve your image. You want to help those who need it because it’s the right and decent thing to do.

A group called Save the Children which started almost 100 years ago has been accepting Bitcoin donations since 2014. Even the Red Cross, Greenpeace, and the United Way are taking in this cryptocurrency. BitGiv, a non-profit organization that focuses on public health and the environment also offers other philanthropic projects that can tie up with relevant organizations. It’s just a manner of seeking out what would be the best fit for your corporate values.

Your takeaway

Even with the staggering increase in the value of other cryptocurrencies and the more popular ones such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple, always proceed on a cautionary note. Cash, credit or debit cards, checks, and other online payment systems still rule so be careful in getting the most out of your cryptocurrency purchases. The bottom line is that your people and your small business are capable of so much more if you are able to invest prudently and effectively.


What are some tech hacks for small business owners?

With all the technology available online and some of it can be availed of for free, entrepreneurs should really look into what can help with their business. Let’s take a look at some tech hacks that can benefit small business owners.

  1. Plan your posts on social media way in advance

If you’re not on social media nowadays, then people might think that you don’t exist.  But taking the time to post updates on the latest news about your enterprise might just take up too much time. Try to plan a week ahead so you can schedule what you want to say to your followers who can potentially invite other followers. There’s a tool called Hootsuite that can assist you in covering all of your social media platforms. By scheduling the time to be seen and heard, you help get your business the recognition it deserves.

  1. Seek tech advice through crowdsourcing

The beauty of social media is that you have access to wisdom and information that can help you in the long run. Check out different business groups that are related to your field. By asking advice from the right people, you get that much-needed support you wouldn’t have received if you did it alone. Connect to the world to be better informed and stay equipped to tackle the challenges of your business.

  1. Customer notification alerts can be set up

HubSpot or PipeDrive are software applications that are available to track and analyze your potential customers’ behavior. A notification alert can be sent to your email when someone clicks on your site or downloads a video. Email invites can also be automatically sent out to those who happen to show interest in what your business has to offer. That virtual assistance can really increase your customer engagement.

  1. Be available through an automatic appointment software application

Calendly can be linked to your Google or Outlook calendar. Potential clients can be sent a link to your personalized Calendly Site. There they can see what slots are available for them to confirm an appointment with you. The more people fell that they can get in touch with you, the more likely that they would like to continue engaging with your business.

  1. Freelancer services can be readily acquired at a greatly reduced cost

There are numerous freelancing sites that offer everything from graphic design services to copywriting support. The rates can start from as low as five to ten dollars to even ten times that amount. But, please be diligent in checking out the reviews of your hired freelancers. They might become more of a headache than the bargain exchange that you were hoping to get. Always make sure that you seek these virtual assistants on reputable sites. It would be so stressful to be left in a bind with unfinished projects because the freelancers just disappeared.

So, with all these tech hacks readily available, research carefully and pick the ones that can really help you out. With the right support, your business is sure to succeed.



How do you quit your day job to pursue a startup business?

It’s always a frightful event to take that leap of faith. You have the comfort zone of your 9 to 5 employment and now you want to test the waters of entrepreneurship. Maybe, by reviewing these questions, you might be able to discover if this is the right path for you.

  1. What is your main purpose?

If you’re just in it for the money, that’s necessary, but it might not fuel you for the journey ahead. There must be something deeper to your personal pursuit. In other words, what do you hope to contribute to the world? When you find that meaning, then you’ll find your way.

  1. What are the opportunities presented?

Even if you have a passion for the culinary arts, that might not mean that running a restaurant is within reach. Should there be a glut of food options in your area, the competition may smother you. Research what the market needs and find that niche service or product to answer that need.

  1. What feedback can you get from your circle of influence?

It’s always good to have your relatives and mentors give their opinion on what you hope to do. They may see some things that you might have missed out on. By having that critical feedback on hand, you will be better informed and more prepared to be the best entrepreneur that you can be.

  1. What would your family and friends think of this career adjustment?

When you’re fully involved in your passion enterprise, the important people in your life may unfortunately have to take a back seat to those initial pressing concerns. Be transparent and lay all your cards on the table for the people who mean the most to you. If you can convince them that this is the way to go, their full support will perhaps be your biggest asset to give you that much needed boost to face the challenges that lie ahead.

  1. What can you save on?

The capital expenditures will be quite substantial when you decide to make a go for it. Please review your current expenses and set aside what is unnecessary. You may need to forego some entertainment connections or club memberships. Where you can save gives you more cushioning and additional funds for your upcoming business.

  1. What is it in you that can help you succeed?

Don’t get stuck in the paralysis analysis. It’s vital and very important to have all the necessary data to give you that informed choice on how to tackle any and all challenges to your startup. Please don’t fool yourself that everything will be a bed of roses and it’ll be smooth sailing from hereon out. Avoid freezing and just getting scared stiff because of all the things that need to be done. When you don’t move, nothing moves.

Being an entrepreneur will take all of your talents and efforts. As you psych yourself up for this exciting adventure, keep reminding yourself why you wanted to do this in the first place. Your purpose drives your passion to further enhance your productivity.



Starting a Business: What to Know

So what do you need to know when starting a business? A LOT! You have to be knowledgeable about a lot of things if you want a successful business. A business owner cannot just depend on capital and the knowledge and skills of other people. Every entrepreneur should be equipped with the information and the skills about the business, regardless if he or she hires the most intelligent managers and the most hardworking people in the company.

Here are some of the basic information that every business owner should be equipped with when starting a business.

Own the name

Just because your name is Walda doesn’t mean you have to name your business that—although Walda seems like a good business name. The point is, you have to intelligently choose a name that is easily remembered, appropriate for business and catchy. And once you have a name—or some names since backup alternatives are important—check out if that name is available for trademark and as an internet domain name. In this day and age where having an online presence is very important, it is essential that your business name will also be the internet domain name—it’s easier to access for customers and prospects.

IMPORTANT: Don’t forget to register your trade name.

Keep up with the legalities

There are so many legal steps that one needs to undertake when opening a business. There are federal applications that you need to accomplish, licenses to get, regulations to follow and taxes to pay. Here is a list of some of the permits and licenses a business owner needs to apply for based on the type of business he is operating. Know that ignorance of the law excuses no one. So you have to know the legal requirements of opening a business. If you happen to miss out on some legal issues, the reputation of the business will suffer. We don’t want the customers—or prospective customers—to think that we don’t care about the law.

IMPORTANT: If you are starting a corporation or partnership, don’t forget to apply for an Employer Identification Number.

Separate business and personal accounts

One of the most common ways to financially destroy the business is by integrating business and personal accounts. This will make it convenient for you to use up business money for personal interests. This will never work—even if you have to list down all business and personal expenses. So when you are starting a business, immediately open a bank account for that business.

Get professional help

While this article started with the importance of knowing a lot of things, especially as a business owner, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you can know everything. Accept that no matter how smart you are, there will always be things that you have no idea about. Don’t be afraid to seek professional help. A lawyer is always handy, so is an accountant. These are very important professionals to help you manage the business to make sure it is legally sound and financially robust. And when tax season comes, a tax expert can always give great counsel.