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List of 80+ Expenses Categories & Common tax Deductions for business

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Second, if you want an IMPORTABLE chart of accounts for QuickBooks, you can purchase my kit for my customized “Ultimate Chart of Accounts” for Online or Desktop that I setup for my clients, here:

Third, I do have a free google sheets (downloadable to excel) spreadsheet with a complete list of accounts by industry and company type:


Here is a list of typical Expense accounts or Cost of Goods Sold accounts we have in our client’s QuickBooks file.  But this is across multiple industries, so you may want to narrow your chart of accounts to 15-20 accounts max…


Account Name Description
Advertising and Promotion Advertising, marketing, graphic design, and other promotional expenses
Auto and Truck Expenses Fuel, oil, repairs, and other maintenance for business autos and trucks
Bank Service Charges Bank account service fees, bad check charges and other bank fees
Blueprints and Reproduction Blueprints, photostats, and other printing expense
Bond Expense Construction bonds expenses directly related to jobs
Building and Property Security Building and property security monitoring expenses
Business Licenses and Permits Business licenses, permits, and other business-related fees
Commissions Paid Commissions paid to outside sales reps and agents
Computer and Internet Expenses Computer supplies, off-the-shelf software, online fees, and other computer or internet related expenses
Conferences and Meetings Costs for attending conferences and meetings
Chemicals Purchased Costs of chemicals used in farming operations
Construction Materials Costs Construction materials costs
Continuing Education Seminars, educational expenses and employee development, not including travel
Accounting Fees Outside (non-employee) accounting, audit, bookkeeping, tax prep, payroll service, and related consulting
Legal Fees Outside (non-employee) legal services
Contracted Services Direct labor costs for contract (non-employees) performing services for clients
Depreciation Expense Depreciation on equipment, buildings and improvements
Dues and Subscriptions Subscriptions and membership dues for civic, service, professional, trade organizations
Equipment Rental Rent paid for rented equipment used for business
Equipment Rental for Jobs Rent paid for rented equipment used on jobs
Special Events Brand vangelism, and special events
Facilities and Equipment Expenses related to office, storage, and other space
Fertilizers and Lime Fertilizers and lime purchased for farm operations.
Food Purchases Food purchases including meats, vegetables, and all ingredients for Restaurants
Freight and Shipping Costs Freight-in and shipping costs for delivery to customers
Freight and Trucking Amounts paid for freight or trucking of farm products.
Freight Costs Costs of freight and delivery for merchandise purchased
Fuel for Hired Vehicles Fuel costs for hired vehicles
Gasoline, Fuel and Oil Gasoline, fuel or oil used for farm machinery
General Liability Insurance General liability insurance premiums
Life and Disability Insurance Employee life and disability insurance premiums
Professional Liability Professional liability (errors and omissions) insurance
Workers Compensation Worker’s compensation insurance premiums
Equipment Insurance Insurinf your equipment or facilities
Interest Expense Interest payments on business loans, credit card balances, or other business debt
Janitorial Expense Janitorial expenses and cleaning supplies
Job Materials Purchased Construction materials used on jobs
Laboratory Fees Charges from outside laboratories
Landscaping and Groundskeeping Landscape maintenance, gardening, and pool maintenance costs of your building
Linens and Lodging Supplies Costs of linens and other supplies for guest rooms
Marketing Expense Advertising, marketing, graphic design, and other promotional expenses for our company
Materials Costs Cost of materials used on jobs
Meals and Entertainment*** Business meals and entertainment expenses, including travel-related meals (may have limited deductibility, specially after 01/01/2018)
Media Purchased for Clients Print, TV, radio, and other media purchased for clients
Medical Records and Supplies Filing supplies for medical records for medical practices
Merchant Account Fees Credit card merchant account discount fees, transaction fees, and related costs
Ministry Expenses Ministry expenses for non-profit / churches
Office Supplies Office supplies expense
Other Construction Costs Other costs directly related to jobs such as waste disposal, onsite storage rental, etc.
Other Job Related Costs Other costs directly related to jobs such as waste disposal, onsite storage rental, etc.
Outside Services Payments to outside contractors (non-employees) for projects, consulting, or short-term assignments
Parts Purchases Purchases of parts for use on customer repairs or resale
Payroll Expenses Payroll expenses
Postage and Delivery Postage, courier, and pickup and delivery services
Printing and Reproduction Printing, copies, and other reproduction expenses
Product Samples Expense Cost of products used as floor samples or given to customers for trial or demonstration
Professional Fees Payments to attorneys and other professionals for services rendered
Purchases – Hardware for Resale Purchases of hardware items for resale that are not tracked or counted in inventory
Purchases – Parts and Materials Purchases of parts and other supplies used on service and maintenance jobs
Purchases – Resale Items Purchases of items for resale that are not tracked or counted in inventory
Purchases – Software for Resale Purchases of software items for resale that are not tracked or counted in inventory
Reference Materials Coding books, anatomical charts and models, etc.
Rent Expense Rent paid for company offices or other structures used in the business
Repairs and Maintenance Incidental repairs and maintenance of business assets that do not add to the value or appreciably prolong its life
Research Services Research costs including legal library and subscriptions for research services
Restaurant Supplies Supplies purchased for restaurant operations. Includes dishes, cookware, and other items not classified as inventory or fixed assets
Salon Supplies, Linens, Laundry Costs of supplies used in the course of business (includes linens and laundry services)
Seeds and Plants Purchased Seeds and plants purchased for producing farm income.
Shop Expense Miscellaneous shop supplies and related shop expenses (rags, hand cleaning supplies, etc.)
Small Medical Equipment Purchases of small instruments and equipment not classified as fixed assets for medical practices
Small Tools and Equipment Purchases of small tools or equipment not classified as fixed assets
Storage and Warehousing Amounts paid to store farm commodities.
Subcontractors Expense Subcontracted services performed by other contractors
Taxes – Property Taxes paid on property owned by the business, franchise taxes, excise taxes, etc.
Telephone Expense Telephone and long distance charges, faxing, and other fees Not equipment purchases
Tools and Small Equipment Purchases of tools or small equipment used on jobs
Travel and Meetings Expenses related to travel, meetings, conferences
Conference, Convention, Meeting Conducting, or sending staff to, program-related meetings, conferences, conventions
Travel Expense Business-related travel expenses including airline tickets, taxi fares, hotel and other travel expenses
Travel Expenses for Drivers Business-related travel expenses including hotel and meals for drivers
Truck Maintenance Costs Maintenance, repairs, tires, etc. on trucks, tractors, and trailers for hire
Uniforms Uniforms for employees and contractors
Utilities Water, electricity, garbage, and other basic utilities expenses of your office or business facilities
Vaccines and Medicines Vaccines, medicines, and other drugs for medical practices
Worker’s Compensation Insurance Worker’s compensation insurance premiums


*** Meals & Entertainment are one of the most tricky expenditures to manage, and very often highly scrutinized by the IRS, Also there are some significant changes to the tax law in 2018 and 2019 regarding this deductionConsult with your CPA or hire us: for tax advice


NOTE: these are across multiple industries!  Tax deductibility requires that the expenses are ordinary and necessary in order to generate the income being deducted against, see this article for more

Hector Garcia

Hector Garcia

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