What the Tech: MileIQ
CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Tax Day is just right around the corner but it isn’t too early to start planning for the next year. Keeping good records of expenses is one thing, keeping them organized is another. Every year I sit down to put my taxes and receipts together for our tax man, I think about how I could have made the process simpler and less time-consuming. Good records that are organized might keep you from spending an entire weekend just putting things in order.
For people who use their personal car for business, one of the best deductions is mileage. Salespeople, real estate agents, and entrepreneurs use their personal vehicles for business every day. The mileage deduction for 2022 is 58.5 cents. Even a few errands a week could add up.
The trouble with keeping track of all of those business miles is tracking those business miles. If you’ve got a system of always remembering to write down when you were driving, where you were driving to, and what you were doing, Kudos. For the rest of us, an app that does that automatically can save headaches and money.
I found an app to help and ran across Mile IQ. I liked the premise. Set it and forget it. Once the app is open, and you’ll need it to run in the background, it will record each mile when the phone is moving in a car. It’s pretty smart in that it only records when you’re in a car. You can set it up to start manually if you don’t mind opening the app and tapping a button to get started. I prefer the app doing it on its own.
Once you arrive at the location, Mile IQ will send a notification as an app badge, a little number that appears in the corner of the app icon on the screen. It will ask for you to note whether the trip was personal or business.
To record that you simply swipe left (for personal) or right (for business). You don’t have to do it right away, Mile IQ will save the trip until you categorize it.
You can also tag each trip as a certain expense. I travel mostly for video shoots and meetings and when I swipe right for business it asks what the trip was for. It records the starting address and the destination along with the time and date. If you use more than just one vehicle you can give them each a name and Mile IQ manages trips by vehicle.
At the end of the month or year, or anytime you can send a report in a spreadsheet by email or to save it on a computer. When I did that I saw each and every trip saved neatly so I can print that out at tax time.
Mile IQ is a free app for iPhones and Android devices. You can get 40 trips per month, so if you want to use it for free, you probably need to set it up to start manually or it’ll track every trip to the gym, church or the grocery store. There is a subscription for unlimited drives for $6 a month or $60 a year. not a free app. Yes, since the app is for business it is tax-deductible as well.