That time of year will be upon us soon — our fiscal year end (at least for most of us January-to-December people). And, after year end, we all start thinking about taxes. Lots of changes loom on the horizon with health care kicking into high gear within the next two years. Small businesses need to learn what tax breaks are out there and take advantage of what they can, while they can. For 2012, small businesses can add to their bottom line by taking advantage of the following available tax deductions:

  • Business-related auto expenses: includes mileage, auto costs, parking, and toll fees
  • Out-of-town business costs and a deductible portion of meal expenses
  • Office space costs: If your primary business office is in your home, you may deduct for use of that space (it must be a designated office space — the kitchen table does not count)
  • Account fees: ATM fees, credit card fees, and other miscellaneous bank charges incurred on your business account
  • Professional training: courses, seminars, and classes related to your business are deductible
  • Periodicals: professional journals, newspapers, and books used to help conduct business
  • Fees: chamber fees, professional networking group memberships, etc.
  • Internet charges: business only — you must separate out personal use from your professional use if used for both

To be safe, always check with a tax expert for the latest available deductions. Remember, even though some deductions may seem minor, every bit counts and can add up to a tidy little savings bundle.

—Kathy Shertzer is office manager at Dukate Fine Remodeling, in Franklin, Ind.

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