Tax Season. Two words that everyone in the nation hates hearing as an adult. As a blogger, you no longer need to feel the urgency to run out of town the second you hear those words. This blog is going to dive into what tax season looks like for bloggers. Plus, the best things to do to prepare.
Unfortunately, it is not as easy as blissfully writing your cares away if you make money off of your passion-filled blog. Because it does not always feel like a job, tax season for a blogger can feel a little hazy with knowing exactly what to do. Both full-time and part-time bloggers can have the income to support their lifestyles, but there have not always been clear-cut tips for filing blogging taxes. This blog is here to change that. But also to remind you that talking to a tax professional is always a great idea going into this season. especially if this is your first time filing taxes as a blogger.
If you make any money at all from your blog, you legally need to pay taxes as a blogger. Whether blogging is your full-time or part-time job, you will need to find the right tax form for your income.
Bloggers, like any other profession, are taxed based on the amount of money made in the fiscal year, and the tax bracket they fall under. Additionally for part-time bloggers in particular, if you make more than $600 they tax you through a 1099 form. Anything below $600 would be a 1040 form.
As a blogger, you work for yourself. Like any self-employed individual, you will have to pay self-employment tax on top of your income tax and estimated taxes. Your self-employment tax is the equivalent of what wage workers get taken out of their pay for insurance and social security. Whether or not you pay sales tax depends on if you have any products sold within your business or not. Many bloggers make money solely off of sponsored posts, ad space, and paid partnerships.
If you reviewed a product that values at more than $100 on your blog, you need to pay taxes on that as well. This is extremely important for anyone that reviews luxury brands, which are often more than $100. The great thing about blogging is the ease at which you can catalog these items by filtering the dates and going back through your entries to find exactly how many items that total to be.
If strictly income-based, you only need to pay income tax. However, if you sell any products on your blog, you also need to pay sales tax on those sales.
Deductibles and Tax Write-Offs
One of the most important words of tax season is deductible. Throughout the year you should be keeping track of all of the necessary expenses that come with running a blog. If you have not done that, you need to collect an inventory of all the purchases made for your blog. These can potentially be deducted from your tax total, which brings down your total taxable income.
Potential business expenses: New laptop or desktop, domain hosting, business license, webcam, lighting equipment, editing software, marketing services, etc.
As most bloggers work from home, it’s important to note that in order to run your blogging business, your house utilities have to be paid. In some cases adding your monthly internet and utility expenses can be included in these write-offs! Just as they would be for brick-and-mortar businesses.
Tackling tax season as a blogger can of course feel overwhelming, just as it can for businesses across the country. After reading this, you have the tools to be successful and confident going into tax season as a blogger.
Adeline is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Charlotte where she majored in Communications with a concentration in Public Relations and Journalism. Currently living in Charlotte, she enjoys reading, volleyball, and strolling through her favorite farmers markets with her Goldendoodle Theo.