When you and your business are one and the same, or when it’s just you and a few partners who take care of themselves, keeping the books is much easier than if you’re an employer. Even if your employees are nothing more than a couple of part-timers or family members helping out here and there, these can add an incredible amount of paperwork, insurance coverage, and tax concerns.
However, even though a self-owned business is much easier to take care of, that doesn’t mean that keeping track of expenses is a walk in the park. Instead, it adds a few extra layers of complexity to normal tasks like tracking your household budget and filing your taxes, which is why expense software can come in handy even if you’re the only person going on business trips.
Under Canadian tax law, the food, beverage, and lodging costs of business trips are 50 percent deductible so long as the costs are reasonable in the circumstances. If driving is most of what you do all day, that deductible can go up to 80 percent, and you can get extra deductibles on fuel and vehicle servicing if you’re the business owner or partner and you use your personal vehicle for a long business trip.
Even if you already have accounting software to help you keep track of your business budget in general, expense software or a good template can help you when it comes to keeping track of expenses on a trip or a long outing. By breaking down your travelling expenses, you can get the maximum deductible possible for your province, state, or country.
As a self-employed person, you most likely won’t need all the extra features you get from a top-notch expenses program – you don’t need to submit your reports to yourself for approval, for instance. Also, keeping track of expenses is as easy as picking a good template and sticking with it. Still, even a self-employed person can get a lot of use out of a mobile app that lets you drop information and receipt images directly into a digital expense report.
Self-employed or otherwise, Canadian citizens (and those of other nations) can take deductibles to cover part of the cost of business trips. Even if sticking with a budget weren’t important, that fact alone is enough of a reason to be keeping track of expenses.