Studio owners and fitness instructors hustle long after class ends. Between preparing kickboxing sequences and dance routines, you’re your own marketing coordinator, social media manager and business analyst. And as rewarding as seeing a vision come to life may be, it can create a huge headache when it comes to tax season. Luckily, there are options to help you save. Check these out.
You might think escaping from your normal life is off limits when it comes to a tax deduction, but if your intention of travel is to expand your business or do market research, it’s fair game. You may be able to write off your flight or hotel expenses if you can show that the purpose of the trip was for business expansion (like attending networking events or conferences), explains the founder of Tax Deductible Lifestyle, Hannah Xu, a UK-based tax advisor and author of Discover Wealth Through Tax.
2. Home Office Expenses
It’s likely you may not have an actual office or do most of your administrative or marketing work from home. You may even train clients in your garage or basement. Take note of that! You can deduct rent or mortgage interest, utility bills and internet and phone costs, says Xu.
While your normal fitness clothing isn’t deductible, any clothes with your business logo (as long as it isn’t removable) or that you wear as a uniform can count as a write-off.
Did you buy new treadmills, yoga mats or hand weights this year? Pay attention to section 179 (if you live in the U.S.), which is a provision that allows business owners to deduct up to one million dollars worth of equipment in the year it’s purchased. The best thing? It casts a wide net, so you can apply it to almost all types of equipment, both new and used, and whether you purchased it, financed it with a loan or leased it, says Priyanka Prakash, a financial expert at Fundera, a marketplace for small business financial solutions.
If you drive to and from your studio, this tax deduction could be a game changer. Any mileage traveled between studios, gyms or clients can generally be deducted, says Aaron Lesher, a CPA and head of strategic initiatives at Hurdlr, an app that helps small businesses, entrepreneurs and freelancers organize their finances and taxes. Certain exceptions need to be taken into account—like driving directly from your home to your business—but if you’re someone who works at multiple studios, keep this money-saving tactic in mind.
Make an improvement to your studio? You may be able to take more of a deduction this year than in the past, thanks to a recent change passed by Congress. Save all of your receipts and log expenses throughout the year. It’s never too early to contact your tax advisor to see where you stand, suggests John Blake, a CPA and partner at Klatzkin & Company LLP, in New Jersey.