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RV full-time taxes: how are they different

by | Dec 4, 2016 | RV Life Taxes, Small Business | 0 comments

With so many questions, tax time can feel overwhelming. With this list, I hope to answer some questions to aid in gathering information and staying organized throughout the year to make tax time easier. Remember each of us is individual and has individual tax needs even when we live in an RV. RV full-time taxes don’t have to be difficult. Let’s get started.

RV full-time taxes

When it comes to tax time, where do I begin?

Gather all documents that are mailed to you. You can sometimes also download your forms directly from banks and other financial institutions. This can include 1099s, W2s, 1095, 1098, Social Security form, etc.

If you have your own small business, make sure your books are up to date for the end of the year and everything is reconciled. If you plan on using a tax professional to help prepare your taxes, I suggest also having a copy of last year’s return to provide the tax professional. This will aid in ensuring your data is correct.

I have a remote business I run from my RV. What paperwork will I need to file my income tax?

Hopefully, you’ve been keeping track of your expenses and can easily gather this information. I recommend using Quicken, Quickbooks, Xero, Freshbooks or other software to help aid in this all year long. It will make life easier come tax time. Plus, you’ll be able to see how your business is doing with reports.

You will need:

  • 1099s
  • Total income for the year
  • Itemized expenses for the year
  • Big-ticket items you’ve purchased, the date you purchased, and the cost (large business assets)
  • Inventory (if you have an inventory business)
  • Mileage for any vehicle used for the business (must have written evidence, have yearly mileage vs. business mileage, and date vehicle put into service for the business) If using actual expenses, then you’ll need costs of maintenance, insurance, registration, gas, etc. in addition to the mileage. You get to take a percentage based on business use.
  • Health Insurance costs
  • Estimated Tax Payment Amounts

Are taxes different because I live in my RV?

Sometimes they can be easier because you don’t have extra forms to fill out. Other times they are no different than living in a sticks-and-bricks home. Income tax is really an individual case-by-case basis depending on age, work, income, etc. Feel free to reach out and schedule a discovery call.

What if I received a free site in exchange for working?

This really depends on the work and the employer. My best quick advice here is to use whatever 1099 the employer provides to you. It will have the numbers you need for your income and it is provided to the IRS from your employer. Taxes and workamping are a whole other topic.

The IRS does consider bartering as income and you do need to include the fair market value (FMV) of anything you receive in exchange for your work in a campground/RV park. It’s best to reach out to your tax professional with specific questions on this as every situation is unique.

I rented my RV out this year. Can I take the expenses on it?

That depends. Renting your RV is a whole other story especially if you live in it full-time. Did you rent it out for more than 14 days? If so, then yes you can take some of the expenses related to your RV. The expenses would be prorated for however many days it was rented out vs. you lived in it. Expenses include fees for listing on a rental site, RV insurance, RV taxes (property taxes), and repairs directly related to the rental (a renter breaks something and you need to fix it).

I run my business/work remotely from an RV. Can I take a home office deduction?

The short answer here is no. A home office must be 100% dedicated to the business and not be used for any other purpose. When you live in a tiny home, is there really enough space to dedicate solely to a business and not use for any other purpose? This is situation-dependent and you might be the exception to the rule here. Feel free to reach out with your situation and I’ll see if I can help you with your taxes.

Disclaimer:
This website is for general information only. We are not rendering legal, accounting, or other professional services. For specific tax or legal assistance please consult your tax professional or me on an individual basis.

Want to know which deductions you can use as an RVer? Check my checklist below to find out the major deductions you should be taking advantage of.

 

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Hi! I’m Heather Ryan, EA and I live full-time in an RV with my husband and two dogs. As a full-time digital nomad, I understand many of the unique tax situations created by travel. I also fully support entrepreneurs and the struggles they face. The goal of this site is to offer my knowledge through advice and tips to real-life situations and questions.

Are you getting ready to transition to full-time RVing? Are you already on the road?

This book has everything you need to know about taxes as an RVer.

Finances for RV Entrepreneurs Course

By the end of the course, you’ll understand how to register your business, stay organized with expenses and income, and keep on top of your tax obligations.

Disclaimer:

This website is for general information only and is not intended to substitute for obtaining legal, accounting or financial advice. It is not rendering legal, accounting or other professional advice. Presentation of the information on this website is not intended to create a client relationship. For specific tax assistance please consult a tax professional on an individual basis.

While I make every effort to furnish accurate and updated information, I do not guarantee that any information contained in this website is accurate, complete, reliable, current or error-free. I assume no liability or responsibility for any errors or omissions in its content.