Cuts or no cuts, a lot of small business owners are bummed about how complicated their business taxes still are—and that they only seem to be getting trickier.
But the National Small Business Association’s 2018 Taxation Survey shows many small business owners are less focused on the savings and more concerned about the time and complexity that go into paying and filing each year.
Here’s a summary of small business owners’ biggest tax burdens, in numbers:
1. A full work week
One in three small businesses say they spend over 40 hours each year on their federal taxes. Some of those businesses spend upwards of 120 hours. That’s a full 15-day pay period devoted to calculating, reporting, and filing every year. Any volunteers?
That’s how many small businesses spend over $1,000 on federal tax prep and filing every year. That’s on top of what they actually owe in taxes, by the way.
Fifteen percent of those businesses spend more than $10,000 a year to complete their taxes. For comparison, 41 percent of small businesses spend less than $10,000 on marketing annually.
3. Almost 5x
Small business owners’ uncertainty about taxes jumps from 4 to 19 percent between tax years 2017 and 2018. That means employers expect their tax-induced tension headaches to get roughly five times bigger. Yay?
4. Over two-thirds
A whopping 67 percent of small business owners say administrative burdens—like calculating withholdings and getting the right paperwork—are their biggest tax concerns this year. The burden of coming up with the dough (29 percent) doesn’t even compare.
5. One in five
That’s how many small business owners say they spend six hours or more each month handling payroll taxes. One in three small businesses with five or more employees also reports spending six-plus hours per month.
It’s a lot, we know. If you’re struggling under the weight of those tax burdens, here are a few basic tips to ease the pain:
- First, find an accountant who can help you navigate the new law. We’ve got some all-star references, but remember: The most important thing is to identify a trusted partner for your business.
- Next, consider software that can reduce your monthly and yearly tax worries. (Just FYI, when you use Gusto for your payroll and benefits, we handle 100 percent of your payroll tax filing for you.)
And whenever you have questions along the way, we’ve got your back.
Photo credit: U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Siuta B. Ika