Originally Posted by jacobsen1
And I need to sit down and do mine... We aim for breaking even every year, but I'd like to know if I'm getting or giving that little bit this year as I'm trying to work out a budget for some new camera gear right now, and that little bit could make a difference in what I get....
The first question is “do you do your photography for profit”? Most photographers make some form of money from their freelance photography, in some way. That's all that's needed to establish a "for profit" business.
Well, I’ve made some money doing portraiture now, so I’m working for profit, with an assumed (though not defined) business plan. Some of those photos made it to the photo thread, and one was in a photoshop thread, if you recall. So expenses that go towards that business may be written off. Go to your local clerk (varies by state) to file a “Doing Business As”. Cost me $10, and I have it filed with my bank as a separate account for convenience (incl. tax recording puposes…I just save the statements for tax time), ect. JBRoose Photography
I posted a loss this year…a significant one, actually, but that’s not a bad thing
. I wrote off the RebXT, Canon PIXMA printer, bag/tripod/camera cards, lenses, computer upgrades for Photoshop CS2, photography books, proofbooks for clients, “cost of business” prints for clients, car milage to photoshoots and to clients homes…ect. I also sold a few photos from a trip I took, so I wrote off parts of the trip (I’ll actually be posting some of those pix in the photo thread this weekend). If you’d like, I can send you my spreadsheet of expenses, cashflows and milages…its at home.
You’re allowed to post losses “question free” for 3 years, in establishing your business. Thereafter you may post losses with explaination, otherwise you may still post loses equal to your profits. This year, I’ll likely be picking up a stupio lighting setup (couple of umbrellas, light box, hotshoe transmitter), and a lens or two (perhaps a sigma 12-24 or canon 10-22, a 24-70 f/2.8…and maybe that 85mm portrait prime)…and the writeoff next year will defer a good chunk of that. I still suck at photography…but am getting better, and people want to buy my stuff *shrug*
. It occurred to me halfway through last year…”I should start a business for a shelter”. My accountant has talked me through the basic of the rest.
But yeah, I set it up originally as a tax shelter when I started getting "very minimal" payments. In the long run though, this is all for the purpose of making more of a profit with this all.
There’s a big thread about businesses as tax shelters…lemme’ find it for you.
There’s more, but ask away, I’ll answer to the best of my ability