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Accounting and Tax Deductions For Bloggers

Out of sheer transparency, I want to share something super personal today – my income. And even more important, my expenses and how they are affecting me financially. Blogging is relatively new, and taxes are basically a big ball of confusion for me. I’ve literally never had to take a finance or business class in my life (this coming from an art major), so I have been trying to single-handedly figure out how to submit my self-employment taxes myself. Up until 2015, APOL was quite honestly breaking even, so worrying about taxes was – whatever. I really wasn’t paying much attention to what was coming in or going out of my account because well, I had a full-time job for that. Mistake number one. 2016 was the year that I tackled accounting and tax deductions for bloggers. 

Keep reading about accounting and tax deductions for bloggers in today’s full post!

At the end of last year, I realized I was actually making a significant amount of income from blogging. Like enough to quit my job and never look back. So you might be asking why the heck am I still working at a full-time job? (That’s a post for another day.) But more importantly, I had to get my butt in gear – and fast – for the impending tax season. But truth be told, I have zero experience or knowledge in how to handle my own business taxes. Jordan’s dad is a CPA which up until now has been a major help, but even this year he was like WHOA, we need to stop and look at this. Basically, I categorized my own worksheets, handed it in to him and he told me that I owed $14k back to the government. HELLO real world.

Bottom line, I don’t owe $14k. I was messing up majorly on my Schedule C form and worksheets. I wasn’t reconciling my accounts at the end of each month, I wasn’t accounting for HUGE deductions and I wasn’t saving any of my receipts. It was time for a real big come-to-Jesus meeting over my business account and bookkeeping. However, trying to explain my income/expenses is difficult because blogging is so new and the deductions for it are very specific. Most CPAs aren’t familiar with blogging expenses and deductions, so talking about it is like you’re speaking Greek.

So HOW did I figure this all out? How am I getting all of my accounts together to get that refund back? (I sent in an estimated amount for my taxes and filed an extension in order to sort things out properly.) Google searches for taxes for bloggers render pretty vague results and didn’t answer any of my questions, so I decided to take a course by someone who actually does bookkeeping for bloggers. Erin Armstrong of Enlightened Accounting has literally saved me and my mess of a business account.

From going over the pertinent forms to explaining tax terms in language that I can actually understand, I have come to terms with my taxes and maybe even found peace with them (so strange right?) because Erin has walked me through the steps complete with examples of real blogging finances and deductions. If you are struggling to figure out how to properly categorize your expenses and manage your bookkeeping, I highly suggest Erin’s e-course A Course About Money for Fashion and Beauty Bloggers.

After emailing her about my $14k dilemma, she legitimately was concerned and determined to help me get the number down to it’s correct amount. She completely understands the ins and outs of blogger bookkeeping and can help you too. No one wants to get audited you guys especially if you are claiming home office deductions or even your car as a business expense. This is serious stuff!

I’m sharing this with you guys today because this year was an eye-opening experience for me, and I know that some of you out there probably have the same concerns and questions. Erin is generously offering her course for only $149 (normally $299) right now for those who sign up through today’s post. It’s a four chapter course with access to her private Facebook group where you can ask further questions relevant to your bookkeeping. I cannot reiterate how important it is to be informed and somewhat knowledgeable about your blogging finances especially if you are looking to go full-time with your blog!

For more information:

A Course About Money for Fashion and Beauty Bloggers

Have any questions or advice for blogger bookkeeping? Leave a comment below or email me – [email protected]!

Photos by Jordan Hefler
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  • Reply Maggie Zemanek

    This is super helpful, thank you!! It's something I need to start thinking about that I never have before.

    April 25, 2016 at 2:44 pm
  • Reply Regally Soled

    This is EXACTLY the post I've been searching for. We are picking up pace working with brands both sending us items and paying for posts and I have not a clue what to do with our taxes. We've never had to file before and definitely could use some major guidance in that department.

    XO, Jaime |

    April 25, 2016 at 3:41 pm
    • Reply Erin Armstrong

      Jaime, that's AWESOME! I hope you'll take the course b/c it was created from my work for ladies just like you 🙂

      April 26, 2016 at 5:23 pm
  • Reply Carey

    I just recently started my blog and I hadn't even thought of this. I'm know where near making it a full time business (or making any money at all!), but this definitely gave me something to think about! Thank you!!!!

    The Dainty Details |

    April 25, 2016 at 3:54 pm
  • Reply Amanda Elizabeth - Meet @ the Barre

    Yes taxes were certainly interesting this year with my full time job, blogging, newly married and not having kids. I appreciate you taking the time to talk about a topic that sometimes gets brushed under the rug and really should be something that is more freely talked about. It's all fun and happy to get free things sent to us as bloggers but those are items that can be taxed at the end of the year. I need to be a little more hyper vigilant this upcoming year especially with my blog spending.

    April 25, 2016 at 8:05 pm
    • Reply Erin Armstrong

      Congrats on all this past year's accomplishments, Amanda! 🙂 Taxes can definitely be a little overwhelming… In the course I try to show you all the expenses you can be deducting (and how you qualify for those deductions) to minimize the taxable income. Kuddos to you for joining the money conversation!

      April 26, 2016 at 5:27 pm
  • Reply Lauren Duncan

    Oh my gosh…seriously such a wonderful post! Its something that's been on my mind but I've been reluctant to tackle!! Loved this post! XO


    April 25, 2016 at 10:42 pm
  • Reply Kathleen Harper

    This is so helpful! I am the worst at taxes – they make me feel so overwhelmed. This is great though!

    April 26, 2016 at 12:17 am
  • Reply Lavinia Făt

    Very helpful this post, thank you s much for sharing

    April 26, 2016 at 11:14 am
  • Reply Erin Armstrong

    LOVE to hear that this course was helpful, Krystal! And thank you for sharing about your experience with money, taxes and income! It's a conversation more of us lady entrepreneurs need to be having!

    April 26, 2016 at 5:21 pm
  • Reply Vera

    This is such a great post, I will definitely sign up. Thank you!!

    Blonde in Cashmere

    April 26, 2016 at 10:57 pm
  • Reply Corrine

    The extra charges of a government on the purchasing of property for small business startup in the form of general country tax can be eliminate by using accounting tips easily with in a seven days according to the rules and regulations of a government,If you write an application with the authentic reasons for a elimination of property tax and also attached a legal documents of a property tax pairs after that submitted in the government office by the tax layers which is helpful for you to approved the claim of your property tax in the seven days without any allegations of a government on the application of your property tax ,Remember don’t write any irreverent reasons in the applications of property tax you want to submit in the office of government and also don’t attached any illegal or extra document of property which increase the chances to refuse or neglect your claim application ,So keep it in your mind all the instructions and requirements given to you by the tax layer after concerning this kind of matter according to the current policy of government .

    August 16, 2018 at 10:21 am
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