For a salesperson, building customer relationships on behalf of the brands you work for is your bread and butter. That said, one relationship you might feel more conflicted about is with the IRS. Filing your taxes can be especially overwhelming for the newly self-employed, who are used to having taxes deducted from their paychecks by employers.
The good news: We've got a long list of leads you can turn to when tax season arrives. From office supplies to client gifts and trade show tickets, here's a list of common money-saving write-offs that outside sales reps should deduct from their taxes.
If you drive for work ...
If you're in sales, you probably spend a lot of time on the move, meeting with clients, going to the office, and picking up office supplies, inventory, or client gifts.
Luckily, when you use your car for work you can write off car-related expenses.
Parking for a meeting downtown, or any other work trip, is tax-deductible!
A toll while driving to or from a work destination is tax-deductible!
Car purchase & depreciation
If you buy a new car, you can write off part of the cost every year for five years.
Flashlights, tire iron, duct tape, and other tools you may need in your vehicle are deductible.
Car insurance & registration
Car insurance monthly fees, registration, even roadside assistance are partially deductible.
Oil changes, repairs, and regular checkups are all tax-deductible if you drive for work.
If you discuss work at a restaurant ...
Working as a sales representative involves a lot of meetings with others — clients, mentors, fellow sales reps, and other folks who might be helpful in your business, like marketers.
If you meet someone at a restaurant to chat about work-related matters, it counts as a business expense and can be deducted.
If you discuss work with a coworker, mentor, client, or prospective client, it's a write-off!
If you leave town for work ...
Meeting an out-of-town client, attending an industry event, or heading to a sales conference?
These all count as business trips and the associated costs can be written off your taxes.
Planes, trains, and car rentals are all work-related travel costs that can be written off.
When you travel for work, lodging expenses such as hotel rooms or Airbnb are write offs.
When you're traveling for work, all meals are tax-deductible. Even takeout!
If you work from home ...
Making sales calls and working on lead generation and client development are just a few of the tasks a sales representative might do from a home office.
If you do work from home, remember to write off related deductions.
A desk, chairs, lamps, and other home office necessities are all tax write-offs.
You can write off up to $2,500 for individual repairs to your property.
Gotta keep the lights on in your home office! A portion of your electricity bill counts.
Whether it's rental or homeowners insurance, you can write off a portion through your home office deduction.
It'd be hard to work in an office without running water, huh? You water bill counts.
Your Comcast bill is a tax write-off. You need internet to do your job!