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Paid Surveys, Income Taxes, and Self-Employment

Wednesday, October 20th

Paid Surveys, Income Taxes, and Self-Employment

If you regularly earn money at home, then you are self-employed. Simply put, self-employment entails being in business for yourself and enjoying all of the rewards that go along with it. If you consistently participate in paid surveys, the income may be taxable. Nobody loves tax time, but it's important to realize the many benefits of making money from home and one of those benefits may actually relate to taxes.

If you work at home and regularly participate in online surveys, you may be able to deduct the cost of your computer, internet access and other expenses directly related to your business. If your printer, fax machine or other office equipment is required for the operation of your business, then you may be able to deduct the cost and expenses related to each of these items as well. In addition, you may deduct your health insurance as it is a necessary expense that may otherwise be offered through a traditional employer. When you are self-employed, however, you are required to find your own insurance and seek coverage according to your needs.

For some, paid surveys account for occasional income and may only serve as extra spending money. For others, it may be the equivalent to a part-time or full-time job. There are many benefits to working at home, including choosing your own work hours, spending time with family, showing up at the office in your favorite pajamas and house slippers and taking breaks whenever you need them. Not to mention when vacation time rolls around, you won't have to ask the boss if you can have time off or schedule your recreational time to suit him/her. Instead, you will enjoy the freedom of coming and going as you please and working as much or as little as you like. Self-employment can be a wonderful adjustment for those who are tired of the typical 9 to 5 job.

Although tax time can be a little more difficult for self-employed individuals, the good news is that work at home businesses are entitled to the same deductions as large businesses. If you participate in paid surveys and pay a fee of any type, keep your receipts for expense deductions, along with your monthly internet bills and any other services that you purchase in conjunction with your business. Saving your receipts may be the difference between smooth sailing and a rough road to getting your tax forms completed.

Participating in online surveys may be a fun way to earn some extra money without having to come up with a large investment, product inventory or other costs commonly related to traditional business start-ups. If you find the right paid surveys opportunity and are able to find consistent work, your next paycheck may be just a click away.

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Paid Survey Program FAQ

Absolutely! While you shouldn't expect to "get rich quick" , you can earn a decent amount in cash and gift cards by taking online surveys.
Definitely not. In fact, that should be your first red flag: any company that requires you to "pay to play" is not on the up-and-up. There are dozens of reputable sources of paid surveys that give you free access - and, in fact, many of them will give you a bonus just for signing up!
You will be asked to share your perspective on a wide range of topics. These could include your shopping habits, entertainment preferences, and even your opinion on national and global events.
That depends on the company. Some paid surveys work on a point system, letting you exchange your accumulated points for gift cards or cash. Others are cash-only. You may get your gift cards in the mail or as an online code; cash payments usually come via PayPal or paper check.
Each provider of paid surveys works differently. You might be paid weekly, every other week, or only when you've accumulated a minimum number of points or cash balance.
Most platforms have daily opportunities to increase your earnings. You may not qualify for all of them, depending on the demographic the surveys are targeting.
That's an important question. There are definitely some shady survey "opportunities" out there. Fortunately, there are also many reputable, well-established platforms that work exactly as advertised: no fees, no tricks, just a way to make some money by sharing your opinion. It's a good idea to check out the reputation of the company you're considering before signing up to do their paid surveys.
There isn't one, but there are some downsides to be aware of. You may spend 10 minutes filling out a screener survey, only to find out you don't qualify - and you may not get any rewards for your time. Also, a small number of paid survey companies base their biggest rewards on signing up for third-party offers - meaning that you'll have to spend money to make just a little. But, if you've got the time on your hands and don't mind sifting through the surveys to find the ones that are worth doing, paid surveys are a legitimate way to get some extra spending money.
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