I know this topic is really old, but it is so in line with what I wanted to ask that I thought I'd try here first. I have a very small business teaching yoga. It is a sole proprietorship, and I have no employees. The majority of the work I do is as an independent contractor. All of the other yoga teachers I know shy away from doing their own taxes, but I have always done mine myself, and it didn't get that much more complicated when I started the business. It's nice to see that the consensus here is that for such a straightforward, small business, doing it yourself is fine. I have only netted $2400 or so this year anyway, so paying an accountant seems like a huge expense.
All that said, every once in a while I get struck with anxiety about the possibility of an audit, and whether or not I might be hit with back taxes. So, I have three questions for you fine folks that will hopefully help preserve my state of mind and confidence. First,it was mentioned above that if you claim your home office as your headquarters, you can claim mileage deductions on any trips out for business. I have done this in the past, but no longer have a home office. I don't rent one either, though; is it legit to claim my home as my headquarters (my home address is listed as my business address) if I don't claim a deduction for the office space?
Second question... I have never had any qualms about claiming my mileage deductions. A fellow yoga teacher who does work with an accountant told me earlier this year that any meals you purchase while in between classes can be deducted as such (50%deduction). Given that I have had days where I drive 45. Minutes to teach a class, then stick around in town for a couple hours, that makes sense to me. But it's one of those things that I worry could come back to bite me. Thoughts? This same person also said that you don't need to keep receipts for such expenses as long as they are under $100. I'm using expensify now to track receipts, so I'm not too worried about that going forward, but there are definitely meal expenses from earlier this year that I do not have receipts for.
Finally, and in my mind least importantly, what about job related trainings? Is there a specific category those should fall under, or do you just create one that seems to fit?
Thanks for any help you can give!