This downloadable spreadsheet is a simple, straightforward tool to help you keep important information about your major purchases—musical instruments, cameras, computers, A/V equipment, kilns, easels, and anything else that has a useful life of more than one year—in one well-organized file.
To use the spreadsheet, just click below to download it to your hard drive, open with Excel or other spreadsheet software, and start entering your stuff. We filled in a few lines as examples so remove that dummy data first.
Why do I need this spreadsheet?
When you’re making money from your creative work and need to deal with filing taxes, there are different tax rules for items with a useful life of more than one year, so it’s important to track them carefully. Even if you hire someone to help you file your tax return (and it is usually best to use an accountant or tax preparer), keeping your basic info organized starts with you.
It’s also a really smart idea to keep careful track of your warranty details and serial numbers in case you need service repairs or—gasp—to file an insurance claim in the case of damage or theft.
Besides keeping information and records about your equipment well organized, it’s also wise to brush up on some tax basics yourself. Here are a few helpful articles on taxes and equipment for creative types:
Tax Deductions for Artists —Nolo.com
Depreciation of Musical Instruments —Polyphonic.org
Cameras and lenses are depreciating assets —DP Review
The Dos and Don’ts of Deductions —Backstage
Please post any questions in the comments and we’ll do our best to get you steered straight!