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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Recently started driving for Uber a month ago. I track everything, as I ran a small business years ago where I normally took the standard mileage deduction vs. actual expenses on the vehicle. Std. deduction usually worked out best and my mileage was normally not significant. So, I got a little deduction. But now, as an uber driver, unless I am doing my figuring wrong or not remembering my schedule C's correctly, if I take my mileage driven daily, multiply it times the new 2023 rate of 0.655, the vehicle NEVER shows a profit. EVER. How can that be even possible. Unless the big inner city drivers (I'm in a smaller metro area, pop. 479k) are making a ton more money, most Uber drivers are gauranteed to never have to pay taxes? The bad side is then after so many none profit years, you are done, not to mention, you get no credits for social security. For example, I drove 206 miles last night, made 131.65 and when you run (206*0.655), that comes out to $134.93 which is a -3.28 dollar loss. Almost every night is a loss, and I am including tips (I think you don't have to count those, which in that case, every night will be a loss.) At this rate I will drive about 48,000 miles and have a tax write off of $31,440 dollars. I will not make that much in earnings, yet, I am making money after gas and supplies, etc. The mileage rate is wrong, or are my figures?

Answers on wear and tear on the vehicle, etc., are erroneous in my opinion, as they make it look like you never turn a profit. You do. Will you tear up you car, maybe. But the fact remains, I have actual profit in hand and the mileage deduction erroneously shows otherwise. OR am I figuring wrong?
 

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Recently started driving for Uber a month ago. I track everything, as I ran a small business years ago where I normally took the standard mileage deduction vs. actual expenses on the vehicle. Std. deduction usually worked out best and my mileage was normally not significant. So, I got a little deduction. But now, as an uber driver, unless I am doing my figuring wrong or not remembering my schedule C's correctly, if I take my mileage driven daily, multiply it times the new 2023 rate of 0.655, the vehicle NEVER shows a profit. EVER. How can that be even possible. Unless the big inner city drivers (I'm in a smaller metro area, pop. 479k) are making a ton more money, most Uber drivers are gauranteed to never have to pay taxes? The bad side is then after so many none profit years, you are done, not to mention, you get no credits for social security. For example, I drove 206 miles last night, made 131.65 and when you run (206*0.655), that comes out to $134.93 which is a -3.28 dollar loss. Almost every night is a loss, and I am including tips (I think you don't have to count those, which in that case, every night will be a loss.) At this rate I will drive about 48,000 miles and have a tax write off of $31,440 dollars. I will not make that much in earnings, yet, I am making money after gas and supplies, etc. The mileage rate is wrong, or are my figures?

Answers on wear and tear on the vehicle, etc., are erroneous in my opinion, as they make it look like you never turn a profit. You do. Will you tear up you car, maybe. But the fact remains, I have actual profit in hand and the mileage deduction erroneously shows otherwise. OR am I figuring wrong?

Your math is correct, however...

Whether or not your actually turning a profit is a different matter from whether or not the IRS math shows you turning a profit.

How much your actual expenses are is a matter that has been debated on these forums ad nausium, the conclusion is tha it's debatable.. with some markets being worse than others.

Some markets will simply never have a taxable profit, you must be in one.
 

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First, you are indeed required to report tips (cash included) as income. Regarding expenses, the standard rate is what the IRS figures is the average cost to operate all types and sizes of vehicles for business use. (YMMV) Driving for U/L you are in essence exchanging your equity in your car for cash flow. And, as you mentioned, you aren’t contributing to SECA unless you’re showing a profit of at least $400, IIRC.
Disclosure: Above statements are just my opinion. I am not a tax professional.
 

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Recently started driving for Uber a month ago. I track everything, as I ran a small business years ago where I normally took the standard mileage deduction vs. actual expenses on the vehicle. Std. deduction usually worked out best and my mileage was normally not significant. So, I got a little deduction. But now, as an uber driver, unless I am doing my figuring wrong or not remembering my schedule C's correctly, if I take my mileage driven daily, multiply it times the new 2023 rate of 0.655, the vehicle NEVER shows a profit. EVER. How can that be even possible. Unless the big inner city drivers (I'm in a smaller metro area, pop. 479k) are making a ton more money, most Uber drivers are gauranteed to never have to pay taxes? The bad side is then after so many none profit years, you are done, not to mention, you get no credits for social security. For example, I drove 206 miles last night, made 131.65 and when you run (206*0.655), that comes out to $134.93 which is a -3.28 dollar loss. Almost every night is a loss, and I am including tips (I think you don't have to count those, which in that case, every night will be a loss.) At this rate I will drive about 48,000 miles and have a tax write off of $31,440 dollars. I will not make that much in earnings, yet, I am making money after gas and supplies, etc. The mileage rate is wrong, or are my figures?

Answers on wear and tear on the vehicle, etc., are erroneous in my opinion, as they make it look like you never turn a profit. You do. Will you tear up you car, maybe. But the fact remains, I have actual profit in hand and the mileage deduction erroneously shows otherwise. OR am I figuring wrong?
It shouldnt cost you that much to drive your car unless it's too expensive of a car to be doing this with to begin with. I bought a 2019 Corolla w 40k miles on it for $16,500. Over 2 years I've written off 130k miles x .58= $75k that I'm not paying taxes on
(My income over those 2 years was over 200k)
This savings is roughly the price that I paid for the car. Just worry about how much money you are making and realize you might have to pay tax
and fix the car if/when it breaks.
Ps you pay into ss the same way driving for
uber as when you are self employed..
 

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Recently started driving for Uber a month ago. I track everything, as I ran a small business years ago where I normally took the standard mileage deduction vs. actual expenses on the vehicle. Std. deduction usually worked out best and my mileage was normally not significant. So, I got a little deduction. But now, as an uber driver, unless I am doing my figuring wrong or not remembering my schedule C's correctly, if I take my mileage driven daily, multiply it times the new 2023 rate of 0.655, the vehicle NEVER shows a profit. EVER. How can that be even possible. Unless the big inner city drivers (I'm in a smaller metro area, pop. 479k) are making a ton more money, most Uber drivers are gauranteed to never have to pay taxes? The bad side is then after so many none profit years, you are done, not to mention, you get no credits for social security. For example, I drove 206 miles last night, made 131.65 and when you run (206*0.655), that comes out to $134.93 which is a -3.28 dollar loss. Almost every night is a loss, and I am including tips (I think you don't have to count those, which in that case, every night will be a loss.) At this rate I will drive about 48,000 miles and have a tax write off of $31,440 dollars. I will not make that much in earnings, yet, I am making money after gas and supplies, etc. The mileage rate is wrong, or are my figures?

Answers on wear and tear on the vehicle, etc., are erroneous in my opinion, as they make it look like you never turn a profit. You do. Will you tear up you car, maybe. But the fact remains, I have actual profit in hand and the mileage deduction erroneously shows otherwise. OR am I figuring wrong?
It's a per mile tax deduction for the miles you drove during Uber and lyft, but reading your post seems that you already know that, so I don't know what the point of your post is I guess it's comic relief.
 

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You don't tell the truth on your income tax returns, do you?
You ARE smarter than that - right?

Be truthful about income - lie your ass off on deductions.
"Oh, I can't deduct dog food? I have the receipts."
"Why do I think I can deduct his food? He is my emotional support Yorkie, and he rides with me."

Meanwhile they're overlooking the deduction you took for new tires ... on your mistress's car."

Leave small semi-hidden obvious 'finds' in case of audit.
But, what's the odds of an audit on an Uber driver starving slowly on slave wages?



.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
My question was really bifurcated in objective. Yes, my market doesn't seem to pay much, or I have not fully understood the system yet to increase my take. That being said, either Uber is not paying drivers enough, hence each trip is statistically a loss according to the allowable mileage deduction, or, the mileage deduction is too lenient and obfuscates the fact that drivers are indeed making a profit. I believe it is probably the latter, and in that case, as someone mentioned above, I will not get any SS credits because I will show a loss all the time, unless I under report my mileage; which I will probably have to do. Self-employment is a cess pool of rules and really is a stupid system when you think about it. I'm not going to argue that by driving my car as much as I could would not indeed trash my percieved income (maybe, maybe not... a laborious debate)... however, I will say that, almost any small buisness (self-employed person) can show a loss every year if they desire too, and essentially then not pay taxes. At the end of the year, because the mileage rate is so high, I will show a loss but still have pocketed a significant amount of money for which I will receive no SS benefits because of their broken system. Uber needs to make these smaller markets either actually profitable, or the government needs to do a more exact job figuring out a real rate that doesn't obfuscate the actual income self-employed workers bring home in order to opt out of supporting them through the SS pension system in the future. I can probably tweek my driving more and get my per hour up on less miles, but that mileage rate will still skew my earnings for SS.
 

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My question was really bifurcated in objective. Yes, my market doesn't seem to pay much, or I have not fully understood the system yet to increase my take. That being said, either Uber is not paying drivers enough, hence each trip is statistically a loss according to the allowable mileage deduction, or, the mileage deduction is too lenient and obfuscates the fact that drivers are indeed making a profit. I believe it is probably the latter, and in that case, as someone mentioned above, I will not get any SS credits because I will show a loss all the time, unless I under report my mileage; which I will probably have to do. Self-employment is a cess pool of rules and really is a stupid system when you think about it. I'm not going to argue that by driving my car as much as I could would not indeed trash my percieved income (maybe, maybe not... a laborious debate)... however, I will say that, almost any small buisness (self-employed person) can show a loss every year if they desire too, and essentially then not pay taxes. At the end of the year, because the mileage rate is so high, I will show a loss but still have pocketed a significant amount of money for which I will receive no SS benefits because of their broken system. Uber needs to make these smaller markets either actually profitable, or the government needs to do a more exact job figuring out a real rate that doesn't obfuscate the actual income self-employed workers bring home in order to opt out of supporting them through the SS pension system in the future. I can probably tweek my driving more and get my per hour up on less miles, but that mileage rate will still skew my earnings for SS.
Like you said, any self employment profession allows for crazy write offs, and you can pretty much make up your tax bill every year, even while being honest. As for SS, yeah you'd have to underreport your earnings and force yourself to pay the taxes. I'd say most drivers either already worked enough quarters in prior jobs to qualify for SS later, or are still working a W2 job. Either way, not owing taxes gives you the option of banking that money as an alternative to SS later in life.
 

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Recently started driving for Uber a month ago. I track everything, as I ran a small business years ago where I normally took the standard mileage deduction vs. actual expenses on the vehicle. Std. deduction usually worked out best and my mileage was normally not significant. So, I got a little deduction. But now, as an uber driver, unless I am doing my figuring wrong or not remembering my schedule C's correctly, if I take my mileage driven daily, multiply it times the new 2023 rate of 0.655, the vehicle NEVER shows a profit. EVER. How can that be even possible. Unless the big inner city drivers (I'm in a smaller metro area, pop. 479k) are making a ton more money, most Uber drivers are gauranteed to never have to pay taxes? The bad side is then after so many none profit years, you are done, not to mention, you get no credits for social security. For example, I drove 206 miles last night, made 131.65 and when you run (206*0.655), that comes out to $134.93 which is a -3.28 dollar loss. Almost every night is a loss, and I am including tips (I think you don't have to count those, which in that case, every night will be a loss.) At this rate I will drive about 48,000 miles and have a tax write off of $31,440 dollars. I will not make that much in earnings, yet, I am making money after gas and supplies, etc. The mileage rate is wrong, or are my figures?

Answers on wear and tear on the vehicle, etc., are erroneous in my opinion, as they make it look like you never turn a profit. You do. Will you tear up you car, maybe. But the fact remains, I have actual profit in hand and the mileage deduction erroneously shows otherwise. OR am I figuring wrong?
The $0.655 is a DEDUCTION not an EXPENSE. That deduction will net you ~$0.15 in tax savings.
 

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Recently started driving for Uber a month ago. I track everything, as I ran a small business years ago where I normally took the standard mileage deduction vs. actual expenses on the vehicle. Std. deduction usually worked out best and my mileage was normally not significant. So, I got a little deduction. But now, as an uber driver, unless I am doing my figuring wrong or not remembering my schedule C's correctly, if I take my mileage driven daily, multiply it times the new 2023 rate of 0.655, the vehicle NEVER shows a profit. EVER. How can that be even possible. Unless the big inner city drivers (I'm in a smaller metro area, pop. 479k) are making a ton more money, most Uber drivers are gauranteed to never have to pay taxes? The bad side is then after so many none profit years, you are done, not to mention, you get no credits for social security. For example, I drove 206 miles last night, made 131.65 and when you run (206*0.655), that comes out to $134.93 which is a -3.28 dollar loss. Almost every night is a loss, and I am including tips (I think you don't have to count those, which in that case, every night will be a loss.) At this rate I will drive about 48,000 miles and have a tax write off of $31,440 dollars. I will not make that much in earnings, yet, I am making money after gas and supplies, etc. The mileage rate is wrong, or are my figures?

Answers on wear and tear on the vehicle, etc., are erroneous in my opinion, as they make it look like you never turn a profit. You do. Will you tear up you car, maybe. But the fact remains, I have actual profit in hand and the mileage deduction erroneously shows otherwise. OR am I figuring wrong?
Same in my market,I drive 2 miles for every dollar earned,its just the geology and the fact we dont have upfront fares yet.
Since I dont show a profit I also qualify for free Healthcare which saves me about ,$ 21000 a year.
If I had upfront fares I would probably drive less miles,but in order to keep gold status and see trip distance I have to take some low paying trips to keep above 85% AR.
And reach the 200 point goal for gold.
 

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My question was really bifurcated in objective. Yes, my market doesn't seem to pay much, or I have not fully understood the system yet to increase my take. That being said, either Uber is not paying drivers enough, hence each trip is statistically a loss according to the allowable mileage deduction, or, the mileage deduction is too lenient and obfuscates the fact that drivers are indeed making a profit. I believe it is probably the latter, and in that case, as someone mentioned above, I will not get any SS credits because I will show a loss all the time, unless I under report my mileage; which I will probably have to do. Self-employment is a cess pool of rules and really is a stupid system when you think about it. I'm not going to argue that by driving my car as much as I could would not indeed trash my percieved income (maybe, maybe not... a laborious debate)... however, I will say that, almost any small buisness (self-employed person) can show a loss every year if they desire too, and essentially then not pay taxes. At the end of the year, because the mileage rate is so high, I will show a loss but still have pocketed a significant amount of money for which I will receive no SS benefits because of their broken system. Uber needs to make these smaller markets either actually profitable, or the government needs to do a more exact job figuring out a real rate that doesn't obfuscate the actual income self-employed workers bring home in order to opt out of supporting them through the SS pension system in the future. I can probably tweek my driving more and get my per hour up on less miles, but that mileage rate will still skew my earnings for SS.
Can you help me out can you throw me a bone because I'm lost as to what is being discussed here, are you simply saying that you wish the IRS would allow you to earn more income when you're on social security, are you saying you wish the tax deduction miles driven for business was changed I'm lost.
 

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Drivers is some markets will simply never owe anything… ever.

Without surges an Orlando x driver needs about 1.25 to 1.5 paid miles for every mile driven.

Which has moved from dubiously improbable to mathematically impossible.

Now if we factor surges into the equation you still not over zero yet.

the Orlando market is just really bad about unpaid miles. Usually I can’t get much better than 35-40% of the miles being paid if I’m trying really hard.

charging 2.40 a mile and including tips I can barely get up to $1.50 per mile driven. Usually I’m less than that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
My original premise was, was I doing something wrong in my math and/or driving, or was it the case that in my market, drivers just don't make enough money to show a profit. I was doing my math correct, and my market, even though it appears to support ample drivers, just doesn't pay enough and I will have to finagle my taxes to get SS credits. If Uber payed more, that would rectify the situation. They don't and I don't think that will change. Also, many times I am the only driver out in my market, and on those days I get tanked by driving too far for the next fare, etc. I have adjusted my driving times and that has helped, but I find it hard to believe that either there aren't enough people willing to drive in a metro area of half a million, or that Uber wouldn't see that a single drive servicing such a large area deserves higher fares in order for that area to work out properly, financially speaking.
 

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From my earliest memories, I remember my dad sitting down at the kitchen table to do tax returns every year.
He would sigh heavily and announce "Well, I guess it's time".
He would get a cup of coffee, have two or three blank forms in front of him. He'd sharpen two #2 pencils. Sigh heavily again and start filling in numbers.
Then, he'd get done and look at the bottom line.
Then, he would say something like "Well, THAT was fun .. lets get down to business now."

He'd pick up another blank form ... and fill it out with a LOT more thought, and teeth sucking, and heavy sighs.
Would use an eraser a lot and rewrite.

Then, he'd lean back and review it all and ... sigh.
Then he may erase a couple spots.

Then he'd lean back and review it all ... and smile.

Then he would give the last blank form and an ink pen to my older sister and tell her to transcribe "all these numbers from this one to that one". He even had her sign his name to it. Mom never signed he'd just put a big X there, sometimes with a Crayon.
I asked him later why he had Vikki do that and he said, "It's her handwriting. I didn't fill that out, my dumb kid did it." Worst case she'd go to jail and he had ONE less mouth to feed.

Always thinking, that guy.
Figured that everyone in the family had a job to do.
Vikki did the taxes.
 

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most Uber drivers are gauranteed to never have to pay taxes?
Here's an example illustrating why I don't owe a dime in federal and only a little on state.
  • The Uber document screenshot is all the expenses that Uber knows about (except commercial insurance) -- those that occur independent of my vehicle.
  • The other screenshot is my business mileage summary that Uber doesn't really know about.
Added together, that's a shit ton of deduction.
 

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