reselling gear (at a loss)... deduct or scratch from the record
This is probably ridiculously optimistic, but...
I had to sell 4 or 5 pieces of gear this year to make end meet, all at a loss. My understanding is that I don't have to pay taxes on that income. But... do I still deduct anything as a business expense? Like... the money that I didn't make back by selling the items that I bought in the same year? If so, can I count eBay and paypal fees against that loss?
Just to be clear, I was going to deduct some of these purchases as business expenses, but then I had to sell them before the year was out. Can I still deduct the value lost between buying and selling?
That depends on how they were booked when you bought them. If they are a capital expense, then you have to take the already booked depreciation into account. If you are running a simple profit and loss account (which is what it sounds like) then you just book them in and book them out.
If the ebay and PP fees are not taken at source (i.e. taken off the money received), then they have to be booked separately. Otherwise, you just book the money received.
I do it the way my tax accountant tells me is least likely to raise any flags at the IRS. Yes, it depends on how it was handled on the previous year's taxes, but for a purchase and sale the same year you have your choice. In that case it depends on what the business needs it to be.