Hey, how are things going…business wise? What worked well for you in 2014 and what changes are you making in your small business for 2015? Here are a few tips for your 2015 tax strategies that will assist you during tax time.

1. Check out your cost of using professionals. According to The National Association of Accountants the average cost for basic Federal tax preparation is anywhere between $600-800 dollars. It is far better to spare the expense rather than the huge cost of not filing your business taxes appropriately. A CPA is not only a tax preparation expert, they can help you in determining where your business stands financially and help you measure goals for not only the future of your business, but also the future of your tax guidelines.

2. Get the most out of your travel expenses. As an at-home based business, you probably meet potential customers for lunch, dinner or business meetings. Normally, your commute from home to work is not deductible, however, since your business is at home and designated as such, traveling to a client meeting counts as deductible business miles.

3. You know to keep every receipt for your small business expenses. Travel expenses for a convention or seminar is deductible and considering that you are in the travel industry, you will want to prove that the trip was not a fun-filled vacation to a small island. But keeping the receipts for airfare, cost of the seminar, dates, fees, rentals, etc., will all matter when you travel for your business.

4. Office equipment can be depreciated as long as you keep those records. Furniture, computers and even landscaping can be depreciated although as a home-based business, again, you will probably have to show the need for landscaping for your home business. You will need to put the description of equipment/purchase; The date the item was placed into service for your business use; the purchase price plus shipping and installation costs and any improvements or additions to the original cost basis.

You can do your record keeping by using an account book log statement of expense forms, trip sheets or any records of that written type.
Computer Programs are also used for record keeping. Excel does the work for you and helps you with its many functions to maintain accurate records. The many worksheets that Excel offers can help you keep sorted throughout the year, a file for depreciation, one for car expenses, and another for income and expenses. It will add and sort your items easily at tax time.

Quicken is just one of the many programs that help small businesses integrate your banking expenses and expenditures record keeping and is downloadable for you when you are prepared to do your taxes. Software programs are a very important tool in small businesses, and permits you to activate the red-flag proof your tax information.