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Expense Tracking for Your Properties
Expense Tracking for Your Properties

Understand how to track expenses in TurboTenant to streamline your property's financial overview and simplify tax season

TurboTenant Product Team avatar
Written by TurboTenant Product Team
Updated over a week ago

Are you keeping track of business expenses in a separate spreadsheet, independent of your rental management tools?

Effortlessly document property or business-related expenses alongside your payment records with TurboTenant instead! Simplify your expense tracking easily on the web or through our mobile app.

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TurboTenant recently partnered with REI Hub to bring you intuitive accounting software built for landlords, which includes automated expense tracking. Learn more.

New offer: TurboTenant users get 50% off their first two months of REI Hub.

On the Web

Finding Expenses in Your Dashboard

Navigate to the left-hand menu. Click on the Expenses tab under the Financial section.

Creating an Expense

Within the Expense tab, click the Add Expense button on the lower portion of the info box.

Next, enter the information related to the expense, including:

-The date of expense

-The amount paid

-The associated property

-The associated category (options align to the categories found on an IRS Schedule E form)

You can also provide additional information that will help you understand the expense at a later date (like a description, notes, receipts/documents).

Finish by clicking Add Expense.

After you create the expense, you will receive confirmation that the expense was added, and it will appear in the Expenses table.

Other Features

Click on the gray triangle button on the far right, and you'll see options to Edit and Delete your expenses. Here's how to make the most of these options:

  • Edit an Expense - Click on the expense you want to update, then press the Edit button. Press Save to lock in your changes.

  • Deleting an Expense - Click on the expense you want to delete, then hit the Delete button. We will confirm with you that you'd like to delete the expense.

    Please note: A deleted expense cannot be recovered.

  • Filter Your Expenses - There are filters above the expenses table. You can filter your expenses by property, categories, and date ranges, and more than one filter can be used at a time.

  • Exporting Expenses - Click on the Export button to the right and above the expenses. You will receive a CSV of the view, including active filters.

    If you want all of your expense data, please make sure no filters are active. Conversely, if you want to export with filters on your export, select the relevant options before you export.

In the Mobile App

Finding Expenses

Tap More in the bottom right corner. Then press Expenses. You can also select Record an Expense on the dashboard.

Creating an Expense

Tap on "+ Add" in the top right corner to add a new expense to your account.

You can also attach an image or file to the Expense from your phone.

Other Features

Select the Expense you would like to edit. From there, tap on Edit.

Change whatever information you'd like, then press Save to lock in your updates.

IRS Categories Explained

Advertising – Includes all general expenses for marketing and advertising, such as renting yard signs, advertising on specific websites or publications, purchasing business cards, and sending out mailers.

Auto and Travel – Includes all standard and essential auto and travel expenses necessary for the upkeep of your rentals. This should exclude auto and travel costs related to the initial purchase of your first rental property or expanding your rental business into a new area. Additionally, include 50% of travel meal expenses.

Cleaning and Maintenance – Includes all costs associated with cleaning to prepare a unit for a tenant or after a tenant vacates, including any applicable maid expenses. This category also includes maintenance expenses such as painting, lawn care, and minor upkeep costs for the building, appliances, and equipment.

Commissions – Includes real estate agent or property management commissions paid to find a tenant for your unit.

Insurance – Includes landlord, hazard, and flood insurance expenses - but do not include prorated amounts for annual insurance. Only report the actual amount you pay to your insurance company, excluding any payments made into escrow.

Legal and Professional Fees – Includes costs associated with attorney fees, accounting services, and expenses related to business and financial planning specific to your rental properties.

Management Fees – Includes the expenses related to hiring an agent or property manager to oversee your rental property. This should encompass any costs associated with their services, including any special service calls made by the property manager to inspect the rental.

Mortgage Interest Paid to Banks – Includes the interest amount reported to you by the bank on Form 1098. This should encompass the total interest you've paid to the bank throughout the year, including any interest paid during the closing process.

Other Interest – Includes the interest amount paid to third parties, which may include private investors, businesses, crowdfunding platforms, or relatives. Ensure that you have provided these individuals or entities with a Form 1099, indicating the interest you have paid them. Note: Without a Form 1099, you may not be able to substantiate the deduction.

Repairs – Includes all property repairs that do not qualify as capital improvements. These expenses should pertain to minor repairs and exclude major replacements such as flooring, roofing, and so on.* Additionally, you may include De Minimis Safe Harbor expenses here if they amount to less than $2,500 and you have made the annual election.

Supplies – Includes the cost of incidental materials and supplies such as paper for printing, small tools, and other small miscellaneous materials that don’t fit into another category.

Taxes – Includes all tax-related expenses associated with owning and operating the rental property, such as property taxes, school district taxes, and any special easements or land taxes. Exclude income taxes from this category.

Utilities – Includes utility expenses that you have personally paid, regardless of whether the tenant has reimbursed you. Exclude utility expenses that the tenant has solely paid for without your involvement. The reason for including reimbursed utility expenses is to report the reimbursement as income on the top section of IRS Schedule E and offset that income with the corresponding expense you incurred.

Depreciation Expense – Includes the depreciation expenses that you have calculated. Depreciation is a crucial component of IRS Schedule E, so ensure its accurate reporting.

Other (list) – Includes all additional expenses related to the operation of the rental property that does not fall into the categories above. These expenses can include bank fees, educational expenses, HOA fees, subscriptions, book costs, De Minimis Safe Harbor (if not already reported under repairs), meals and entertainment, and gifts to clients or tenants. It is important to itemize each of these "other" expenses on a separate page.

*The expenses feature in our platform is based on Schedule E, which is used to report the profits or losses from a rental property to the IRS. At this time, there is no option available in our platform to record a capital improvement, as it is not considered a loss to the IRS since it increases the equity of your property. It is recommended that you speak to your tax preparer for assistance in reporting such improvements for tax purposes.

Still have questions? Reach out to our Support Team via chat or by email at [email protected].

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