One of the main benefits of turning your hobby into a business is deducting all of your qualified business expenses, even if it results in a loss. However, if you don’t properly transition your hobby into a business in the eyes of the IRS, you could be waving a red flag that reads, Audit Me! The agency uses several criteria to distinguish whether an activity is a hobby or a business. Here is what you need to know:
As you can see, there is a degree of interpretation involved in reviewing any activity. So, if your business (or any other activity) falls under any of the hobby categories on the right side of the chart, consider what you can do to meet the business-like criteria on the left side. The more your activity resembles the left side, the less likely you are to be challenged by the IRS. And to remove any doubt, your best defense is making some money!