If you make a living from blogging, then you’re already winning at life. However, it’s not all sunshine and smiles in the world of professional blogging, as you still need to deal with some unavoidable administrative tasks.
Paying tax is at the top of this list of annoying yet essential obligations, so what can bloggers do to prepare so that this process goes as smoothly as possible?
Estimate tax in advance
There’s nothing worse than getting to the point of filing a tax return only to find that you’ve got to pay a lot more than you’d anticipated.
This is where it makes sense to use an estimated tax calculator for quarterly deductibles and thus know how much you need to set aside to cover your next tax bill, as well as factoring in the business expenses which you can shave off this total alongside standard deductions.
As with all aspects of paying tax as a blogger, the earlier you make preparations like this, the better. And online tools make it a breeze to estimate tax ahead of time.
Keep your invoices & receipts
Paperwork is useful to cling onto in whatever freelance role you fulfill, so if you write blogs for third party clients, it’s sensible to issue invoices efficiently and track your financial documents carefully.
Likewise when you pay for goods and services that are partly or wholly for business use, hang onto the receipts. These will let you claim them as expenses and deduct them from the tax you owe.
Open a business bank account
Another option for reducing complexity and confusion when preparing to pay taxes as a blogger is to set up a separate bank account that you only use for your business transactions.
If all of your incomings and outgoings related to your blogging come from one account, and are not mixed in with personal money matters, it’s so much simpler.
Get an accountant
Having an accountant to handle your tax affairs for you might seem like a luxury that you don’t need as a blogger, but the reality is that this could be the single best decision you make.
Even in an age when you can file your returns online, letting a certified, qualified and experienced accountant take the reins will mean that you don’t have to worry about making mistakes or stressing over all of the complicated parts of this process.
Provide accurate information
It should go without saying, but filing your taxes as a blogger is only achievable if you have all the right information to hand. This applies whether you are handling the filing yourself or working with an accountant.
You’ll not only need all the invoices and receipts mentioned earlier, but also things like your social security number, alongside things like a W-2 form if you also had a full or part time position with a separate employer during the taxable period.
Add key dates to your calendar
Another excellent tip for bloggers who are worried about the implications of having to pay tax is to put important dates and deadlines into your professional calendar, and implement a system of alerts that makes you aware when they have into view on the horizon.
It might not be an enjoyable prospect to always have tax-related elements on your schedule, but it’s the only way to develop good habits.
Don’t leave it until it’s too late
As discussed above, the sooner you start preparing to pay tax as a blogger, the easier it will be to get through the process unscathed.
Only those who procrastinate will find that they are losing their minds with stress as important deadlines loom. So if you take only one thing away from this article, let it be this piece of advice.