Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Have Questions? Start Here Start Here Start Here
Have Questions? Start Here
I’ve been working with digital nomads for years, and some questions come up again and again.
Take a look below to see if your burning questions are on the list!
Taxes for digital nomads
Probably not. If you’re living in your RV full time, it isn’t a business expense—it’s your home. While it might sound like a good idea, having a business own an RV can create complications like requiring commercial insurance and added DOT stops on the highway. Most of the time, it’s more trouble than it’s worth and just muddies the waters between your personal and business finances (which are usually muddy enough!).
If you physically work and earn money in different states, you’ll probably owe income tax to those states. This means you’ll file multiple state returns. Physically working can mean working as a workamper, traveling nurse, vendor attending festivals, or anything requiring your physical presence in that state.
If you work remotely as a W-2 employee or run your business remotely while traveling, there’s usually no need to worry about filing in multiple states. Typically, you’d file in your domicile or resident state. It’s hard to give blanket advice here given every state has different rules. I’d also need to know your personal situation as a client to best advise you.
Small business basics
It’s important to understand the different types of business entities so you can choose the best structure for your business. An LLC is not a taxable business entity, so as far as the IRS is concerned, it’s essentially the same thing as a sole proprietorship or a DBA. Yes, you read that right—an LLC alone offers no tangible tax benefits. An S corp can provide tax savings, assuming your business meets the qualifications. Read more on LLC vs S corp here.
I highly recommend tracking your expenses with accounting software, which allows you to track income and expenses in the same place to understand the financial health of your company. (It also makes your life much easier come tax time.)
My clients use both paid and free accounting software, so there’s something to fit every budget. Quickbooks, Freshbooks, Wave, and Xero are all great options—check them out here.
If you’re just getting started and software feels like too much, you can always stick with a classic spreadsheet.
Self-employment taxes are social security and medicare (total of 15.3%) on the net profit of your sole proprietor or partnership income. Many people don’t even realize you are paying into that system as a W-2 employee. As the owner of a business, you owe both the employER and employEE amounts.
Quarterly taxes are estimated tax payments due 4 times throughout the year: April 15, June 15, September 15, and January 15 of the following year. Those payments are applied to your self-employment and income taxes, which must be formally filed annually.
If you’re not sure whether estimated quarterly payments apply to you, check out this article.
So glad you asked! I can put the top mistakes new business owners make into 5 categories:
- Misunderstanding the LLC and how it affects their taxes (spoiler alert: it doesn’t). Read more here.
- Confusion about self-employment taxes: whether they owe quarterly taxes, how much to pay, when to file, etc.
- Mixing business and personal finances, which can be hard to untangle.
- Not tracking all business income and expenses throughout the year. It makes tax time more frustrating and time-consuming, and it also keeps your business finances in a black box.
- Trying to take deductions that don’t count for digital nomads: mileage, home office, etc. If you’re wondering why these don’t apply to nomadic businesses—and what you can write off—you’ll love my course: Finances for the RV Entrepreneur.
Working with me
Pricing depends on your desired service and business type, but it’s always a flat fee—never a percentage. See my Services page for more details.
I’m an enrolled agent (EA), which means I’m licensed by the IRS to practice as a tax professional in all 50 states. An enrolled agent is strictly focused on all things tax-related: tax planning, tax prep, and tax representation. Although I offer bookkeeping services, I am not a licensed CPA.
First, we’ll have a discovery call to make sure my services suit your needs. Then I’ll give you access to a secure client portal where you can upload documents, sign an engagement letter, and get all of the electronic paperwork completed. Once I’ve got everything I need, I’ll get started on your return!
I’ll contact you with any questions, but otherwise, the process is totally hands-off for you once I’ve got the documents I need. When I’m done, I’ll upload the completed return to the portal for your review and records. Just add your electronic signature, and I’ll file on your behalf. It’s that simple!
I’ve filed tax returns for clients in 27 states and counting. If I’m not familiar with your state, I have access to the tools necessary to research state-specific tax laws. I always provide the best possible service, so if I don’t know your state’s laws yet, I will when I file your return!
I regularly attend continuing education seminars, both online and in-person. My license requires continuing education every year—plus, I enjoy it! (I know, it’s weird.)
Yes. As an enrolled agent, I can represent taxpayers in any state, so I can provide tax resolution and representation for any tax matter you need help with.