Trump's Tax Reform - What Entrepreneurs Need to Know, with Dustin Griffiths

Trump’s Tax Reform: What Entrepreneurs Need to Know, with Dustin Griffiths – TMA 016

Trump’s tax reform has made a lot of big changes to the tax code.  Because of the overhaul, our proactive tax team posted a series of blogs outlining the changes and what they mean for you.  When we read them, we knew right away that we wanted to share them with you.

So, we brought Dustin Griffiths back on the podcast to share the changes we think are most relevant to the small business owner.  We’re also sharing the links to all of their blogs to help you gain more clarity.

Disclaimer: We’ve published this content for educational purposes only.  For individual recommendations and advice for your specific situation, please consult with a qualified tax professional.


Listen to the Podcast

This conversation expanded on each of the following topics.  We discussed examples and situations to help you understand how the changes will apply to you.  To gain the greatest understanding, be sure to listen to the conversation.

How Trump’s Tax Reform Affects You

Corporate Tax Rates

Corporate tax rates went down from 34% to 21%.  However, C corps pay a double tax.  They’re taxed at the corporate level and again at the individual shareholder level when you pay yourself.  Your total tax rate must account for both, and may effectively create a total tax rate of 36 – 51%.

20% Deduction for Pass-Through Entities

Pass-through entities, like partnerships, S corporations, and sole proprietors, now will only have to claim 80% of business taxable income.  However, there are additional calculations if your AGI is over $315K or ($157K if you’re single), and for service-based businesses, to determine if and how you can use this deduction.

This is a “YUGE” tax savings for many small business owners!  Without doing anything differently, many of you are going to get a 20% reduction of your business’s taxable income.

Vehicle and Asset Purchases

Asset purchases have received an expansion of the Bonus Depreciation and Section 179 definition, as well as the depreciation limits.  This allows you to deduct 100% of the depreciation up front, in many cases, being able to fully expense the purchase price in the first year, for new and used assets.

This expansion puts more dollars in your pocket for large asset purchases.  However, the true test to determine whether to purchase an asset is whether you needed it in the first place.

Business Expense Changes

You can no longer deductions meals and entertainment expenses unless you use them for your employees.

If you find that you had a lot of these entertainment expenses or eating out with clients, business just got more expensive.

Changes in Real Estate Tax Laws

For residential or commercial real estate investors, the reform simplified the definition of property improvements and limited the 1031 like-kind exchanges to real property.  Additionally, rules to inventory, including real property, allow you to deduct the purchase of inventory up-front, instead of at the sale.

Individual Tax Return Changes

For most people, tax rates decreased by around 2%.  The standard deduction nearly doubled, and many of the itemized deductions were eliminated (including miscellaneous itemized deductions, mortgage interest deductions for HELOCs or for loans over $750k).  This simplifies the filing for many people who will no longer benefit from itemizing their deductions to reduce their taxable income.  Personal exemptions of around $4k per person were eliminated, and the Child Tax Credit was increased from $1k to $2k per child.  The deduction for state and local taxes was limited to $10k.  Medical expenses can be claimed if they’re over 7.5% of AGI, making it easier to deduct these costs.

Other Topics

  • Transportation expenses – The employer is no longer able to deduct costs of employee transportation to and from work.
  • Research and experimental – Now instead of having the option to expense this purchase or amortize over 5 years, you must amortize.
  • Business Interest – Removed the ability to expense 100% of business interest if you’re over $25 million in revenue, but businesses under the $25 million mark still may expense 100% of business interest.
  • Alimony Payments – Used to be deductible to the payer and income to the recipient. Now it doesn’t affect either party.
  • Moving Expenses – No longer able to deduct the cost of your move, unless you’re a member of the Armed Forces.
  • Qualified Education Expenses – Expanded the definition to now include elementary and secondary school expenses, so distributions from qualified education savings plans can be used to reimburse for these education costs up to $10k.

To Take It Up a Notch

Trumps Tax Reform - What Entrepreneurs Need to Know, with Dustin GriffithsIf you would like to create a comprehensive strategy to keep and control more of your money, including how to pay less in taxes, email to request your free Financial Picture Consultation.

This conversation will help you maximize your wealth today and in the future, by:

  • Discovering money flowing into your control and money flowing out of your control
  • Strategizing ways to have more money flowing into your control
  • With the End Result being more money to utilize during your lifetime, and more to give to future generations

AND, we’ll include a tax strategy session for you to get a personalized plan to maximize the tax code in 2018.

Links to Incite’s Original Blogs Regarding Trump’s Tax Reform

Incite excellently outlined what Trump’s Tax Reform changes mean for you in this series of six posts:

To learn more about Dustin and Incite Tax, or to contact them directly, visit their website HERE or email Dustin at

Rachel Marshall

Rachel empowers her clients to maximize and control their money so that they can accomplish their dreams and live out their highest purpose. She believes that if you understand the short and long-term impacts of the financial choices you make, you’re better suited to make choices that put you in control of your resources. She helps you discover money flowing out of your control, strategize ways to have more money flowing into your control so that the end result is that you have more money to retain and utilize during your lifetime, and more to pass on to future generations.

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