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Tax Deductions for Bloggers

10 Categories of Tax Deductions Bloggers Shouldn't Forget

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If you make money from your blog and you live in the United States, you have to claim that income on your tax return. Luckily, there are many deductions you can take on your tax return as a blogger. Of course, it's always best to seek the advice of a tax professional to ensure you qualify for any and all deductions based on your individual tax situation.

The following list provides a general idea of deductions to be aware of and consider as you prepare your tax return.

1. Internet-related Expenses

As a blogger, you may be able to deduct your internet-related investments and expenses. For example, consider deducting:

  • Hosting fees
  • Domain name registration fees
  • Internet access fees
  • Blogging software fees (for example, TypePad charges fees)
  • Image or music downloads for your blog

2. Computer Equipment

You may be able to deduct:

  • Your computer
  • Upgrades (such as memory upgrades, etc.)
  • Laptop
  • Wireless router
  • New keyboard, mouse, monitor, etc.
  • Software (for example, photo editing software, accounting software, tax preparation software, etc.)
  • Web camera
  • Digital camera

3. Communications-related Expenses

Many of the communications-related equipment and tools you use to run your blog could be deductible, including:

  • Second phone line for your business or fax machine
  • Fax machine
  • Cell phone calls
  • Long distance calls
  • Blackberry, iPhone, etc.

4. Office Equipment

Traditional office items could be deductible such as:

  • New desk
  • Chairs
  • Lights
  • File cabinets

5. Supplies and Stationery

Little supplies can add up quickly. Keep track of the receipts as these items could be deductible:

  • Business cards
  • Letterhead
  • Envelopes
  • Paper clips
  • Staplers and staples
  • Paper
  • Post-its
  • Folders

6. Advertising, Promotion and Design

Most bloggers invest something into design, advertising or promotion each year. Remember to deduct applicable expenses such as:

  • Blog design (custom blog, header, etc.)
  • Advertising design
  • Logo, letterhead, etc. design
  • Advertising placement
  • Contest prizes
  • Promotional giveaways (for example, imprinted pens, magnets, etc.)
  • Paid site submissions
  • Search engine optimization services

7. Travel and Entertainment

If you attend blogging conferences or meetings, you can most likely deduct those expenses :

  • Conference fees
  • Hotel charges while away on business related to your blog
  • Dining charges while away on business related to your blog
  • Entertainment for clients you take out related to your blog
  • Transportation (car, train, plane, etc.) when it relates to business for your blog

8. Professional Association Memberships and Periodicals

Many bloggers belong to professional associations related to the topic of their blog or to blogging, itself. Professional dues may be deductible. Similarly, periodicals and books that you purchase to help you learn and grow could be deductible, including:

  • Professional association dues
  • Books, magazines, online subscriptions
  • Professional website memberships

9. Office Space and Related Expenses

If you work out of your home to conduct your blogging business, you may be able to deduct the rent for your office space from your tax return. Alternatively, if you work from your home, you may be able to deduct a portion of your household bills as "rent" for that space (if you use that space solely to conduct your blogging business. Expenses in this category could include:

  • Rent
  • Electricity
  • Water
  • Natural gas

10. Miscellaneous Other Expenses

There are a multitude of little out-of-pocket expenses that you may be able to deduct as a blogger. Consider the following as you prepare your tax return:

  • Costs to re-use photos or images owned by another person or entity
  • Headshots used on your blog, website or marketing materials
  • Postage
  • Post office box (if you use one solely for your blogging business)
  • Safe deposit box (if you use one solely for your blogging business)
  • Fees for professional services such as a lawyer or accountant
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