My Perfect Mortgage
Rideshare Driver Tax Deductions Tips
7 minute read
April 3, 2023

As a rideshare driver, you have a lot of responsibilities beyond making sure your passengers get to their destinations safely and keeping your car in good condition.

But there’s another responsibility that many drivers overlook—finding the best tax deductions for rideshare drivers.

By understanding the tax obligations for rideshare drivers and taking advantage of tax deductions, you can maximize your profits and keep more of your hard-earned money.

Understanding the tax obligations for rideshare drivers

You’re generally considered a self-employed independent contractor when you work as a rideshare driver. That means you’re responsible for paying self-employment taxes, including Social Security and Medicare.

Employers typically pay these taxes on behalf of their employees. But as an independent contractor through Uber, you’re responsible for paying them yourself.

In addition to self-employment taxes, you’ll also need to pay federal and state income taxes. The amount you owe will depend on your income, deductions, and other factors.

It’s important to keep track of your earnings throughout the year to estimate your tax liability and avoid any surprises come tax time.

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Tax deductions for rideshare drivers

One of the most overlooked benefits of being a self-employed rideshare driver is the ability to take advantage of certain tax deductions ideally suited to them.

These deductions are there to help reduce your taxable income and lower your tax bill. Let’s look at the most common ones below.

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Vehicle expenses

As a rideshare driver, your vehicle is your most important asset. You can deduct the expenses associated with using your vehicle for business purposes, such as gas, oil changes, repairs, and maintenance.

You can calculate your vehicle expenses using either the standard mileage rate or actual expenses.

Insurance premiums

As a rideshare driver, you’re required to carry insurance costs, including medical expenses like premiums. You can deduct the cost of your insurance premiums as a business expense.

Other business expenses

You can deduct other expenses related to your rideshare business, such as phone and internet service, tolls, and parking fees.

Special tax benefits for homeowners

Owning a home is not just a dream come true, but it also comes with a plethora of tax benefits.

With the right tax-saving strategies in place, you can significantly reduce your tax liability every year. Several deductions and credits available for homeowners can save them a considerable amount of money.

Deducting your mortgage interest

One of the most significant tax-time benefits of owning a home is the mortgage interest deduction.

You can deduct interest paid on your mortgage from your taxable income, resulting in a lower tax bill. Additionally, you can also deduct property taxes paid on your primary residence.

Deducting capital gains exclusion

Another tax benefit of homeownership is the capital gains exclusion.

If you manage to sell your home for a profit, you may be eligible to exclude up to $250,000 of the gain from your taxable income or up to $500,000 if you are married and filing jointly.

To qualify for this particular exclusion, you must have lived in a home you own for at least two out of the five years preceding the sale.

Can I save money by deducting home office expenses?

Homeowners can also take advantage of the home office deduction if they work from home.

If you use almost any portion of your home exclusively for business purposes, you can deduct a portion of your home insurance, mortgage interest, property taxes, and utilities. However, be sure to consult with a tax professional to ensure you are following the proper guidelines.

Pro Tip: Do you write off a lot of expenses but are worried about qualifying for a mortgage? These no-tax-return home buying and refinance programs are meant to help self-employed individuals:

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Keeping accurate records for tax purposes

To take advantage of tax deductions and accurately calculate your tax liability, you need to keep accurate records of your earnings and expenses. These records can include things such as:

  • Receipts for vehicle expenses
  • Mileage logs
  • Bank statements
  • Invoices
  • 1099 forms

It’s important to keep these records organized and up-to-date throughout the year to prepare you for tax time.

Maximizing tax deductions for rideshare drivers

We've shown how crucial it is to maximize your tax deductions as a rideshare driver by staying on top of your expenses and keeping detailed records. The following are some tips for creating the most efficient tax records.

Use a dedicated business account

Using a dedicated business account for your rideshare earnings and expenses can make tracking your income and expenses easier. It can also help you avoid mixing personal and business expenses, which can complicate your tax situation.

Keep a detailed mileage log

Keeping a detailed mileage log can help you accurately calculate your vehicle expenses. You can use a paper logbook or a mileage-tracking app to record your trips.

Take advantage of tax software

Using tax software—and there are many brands to choose from—can help you maximize your deductions and ensure you’re filing your taxes correctly. These programs can also help you estimate your tax liability and identify deductions you may have missed.

Filing your taxes as a rideshare driver

Filing your taxes as a rideshare driver is similar to filing taxes as any other self-employed individual.

If you’re a sole proprietor, you’ll need to file a Schedule C to report your earnings and expenses, as well as a Schedule SE to calculate your self-employment tax.

Depending on where you live and work, you might also have to file state and local tax returns.

Common mistakes to avoid

Filing taxes as a rideshare driver can be complicated, and there are some common mistakes you’ll want to avoid.

Failing to keep accurate records

If you don’t keep accurate records of your earnings and expenses, you may miss out on valuable deductions and overpay on your taxes.

Forgetting to deduct vehicle expenses

Your vehicle expenses can be one of the biggest tax deductions you’re eligible for, so it’s important to keep detailed records of these expenses and deduct them on your tax return.

Failing to pay estimated taxes

As a self-employed individual, you’re required to pay estimated taxes throughout the year. If you fail to make these tax payments, you may face penalties and interest charges.

How to file Uber taxes without 1099

If you’re an Uber driver and you don’t receive a 1099 form from Uber, you can still file your taxes using your earnings summary from the driver portal. You must report your earnings on a Schedule C and pay self-employment taxes on your net income.

Tax planning for the upcoming year

Tax planning is an important part of managing your finances as a rideshare driver.

By estimating your tax liability for the upcoming year, you can make informed decisions about your business expenses and maximize your tax deductions.

Estimate your tax liability

Use last year’s tax return and your expected earnings for the upcoming year to estimate your tax liability. This estimate can help you plan your expenses and avoid any surprises at tax time.

Keep up with changes in tax law

Tax laws change frequently, so it’s important to stay up-to-date on any changes that may affect your tax situation. Monitoring the tax landscape can help you make informed decisions about your business expenses and ensure you take advantage of all available deductions

How much do Uber drivers pay in taxes?

Uber drivers' taxes will depend on their income, deductions, and other factors.

Generally, self-employed individuals like rideshare drivers are subject to a self-employment tax rate of 15.3%, which includes Social Security and Medicare taxes.

In addition, rideshare drivers will need to pay federal and state income taxes on their earnings.

Seeking professional tax advice for rideshare drivers

If you’re unsure about any aspect of your tax situation, seeking professional tax advice is always a good idea.

A tax professional can help you navigate the complexities of the tax code and ensure you’re taking advantage of all available deductions while staying compliant with the law.

Be smart with your hard-earned income

Being a self-employed rideshare driver or an Uber independent contractor can be tough yet rewarding.

You worked hard for your money, so don’t let Uncle Sam take any more than what he’s entitled to. Getting smart about taxes and keeping more of your money is all part of being your own boss.

By understanding the tax obligations for rideshare drivers, taking advantage of tax deductions, and seeking professional tax advice when needed, you can maximize your profits and keep more of your hard-earned money.

See if you qualify for a self-employed mortgage.

My Perfect Mortgage does not provide tax, legal or accounting advice. This material has been prepared for informational purposes only. Consult advisors before filing taxes or engaging in any transaction.

Our advise is based on experience in the mortgage industry and we are dedicated to helping you achieve your goal of owning a home. We may receive compensation from partner banks when you view mortgage rates listed on our website.