Driving is a major aspect of working for WeGoLook as a Looker.
Did you know that you can claim major tax deductions for your time on the road? The catch is that it doesn’t matter how much you drive if you don’t log your mileage.
So, keep track of your mileage so the IRS has proof and you’ll be in the clear with significant tax savings come tax season.
Here’s what you need to know to keep track of your mileage as a gig worker.
Why is Tracking Mileage Important?
Tracking your mileage allows you to show the IRS proof that you drove as much as you say you did. This is particularly useful come tax time, and in case of an audit.
As of 2017, the IRS allows you to deduct 53.5 cents per mile anytime you’re operating a vehicle for business (including driving to an inspection as a Looker).
Since driving is a major part of your job as a Looker, keeping an accurate log of your miles can save you hundreds, even thousands, of dollars each year.
There are additional benefits of tracking your mileage beyond tax deductions. Chief among them is tracking miles for insurance purposes.
Many insurance companies provide discounts to low-mileage drivers. Others have systems in place that reward you for a certain amount of miles worth of safe driving.
Simply put, keeping track of your miles is good business practice for an entrepreneur like yourself. So here are a few tools to help you out.
How to Keep Track of Mileage
The age-old way of tracking mileage driven is with a pen and paper. While this tried and true technique still works, technology makes keeping track of your miles much simpler.
The three best methods of tracking your mileage as a Looker is with online tools, apps, or an in-car tracker.
Let’s look at each method in more detail:
- Online Tools – Manually enter miles (including photos of your odometer for increased accuracy) with an online mileage tracker like TrackMyDrive.
- Apps – Free, or low-cost, smartphone apps can track mileage, including MileagePad and TripLog. Both of these automatically track miles with the help of GPS. TripLog even seamlessly integrates with QuickBooks.
- In-Car Tracker – An in-car tracker from Car Footprints automatically tracks your mileage (and automatically calculates deductions) with a small adapter you plug into your car. It only costs $10 a month.
There’s nothing wrong with keeping track of your mileage by hand. But it sure is time-consuming, isn’t it?
All three of the above methods help cut down on wasted time. In the gig economy, time is money!
Other Vehicle-Related Tax Deductions
Mileage isn’t the only expense you can track for tax deductions as a Looker.
Depending on the specific circumstances, you can also deduct expenses related to fuel, parking, tolls, maintenance, insurance, and registration from your taxes.
When driving for WeGoLook, you can certainly claim all of these expenses. So keep track of them!
Be sure to keep all receipts related to these additional expenses if you hope to safely and legally deduct them from your taxes.
These are the major expenses to consider, but if you'd like further reading, check out IRS Topic 510. Here, the IRS discusses business use of an automobile in more detail.
Your best bet as a WeGoLook Looker is to keep track of all your vehicle expenses, even those that you’re unsure qualify as deductions.
Take all this information to your accountant when your taxes are due to get the most legal deductions possible. Independent contractor taxes can be complex, so it pays to consult an expert before filing.
Keeping track of your mileage as a Looker will save you big money each year!