Tax preparation is an adulting task that most of us dread. It can be monotonous, especially if you’re a freelancer juggling multiple 1099s. Enter Keeper Tax: a tax software that’s designed with freelancers in mind. Keeper Tax can take the headache out of tracking and categorizing your expenses — and the best part? It might just help lower your tax bill significantly. The company claims that its customers save an average of $6,428 each year.
While all of this probably sounds appealing, you may be wondering if Keeper Tax is the best option for you. After all, in the world of expense tracking and tax software, there’s definitely no shortage of options. In this Keeper Tax review, you’ll learn if this company is legit, how it works, and if it’s worth it for you.
What is Keeper Tax?
Keeper Tax is a service that helps independent contractors track work-related expenses that may qualify for tax deductions. The company was co-founded in 2018 by Paul Koullick and David Kang and is headquartered in San Francisco. According to its website, has helped more than 50,000 customers find over $40 million in tax savings since then.
Besides helping you track work-related expenses throughout the year, Keeper Tax can handle your tax filing for a one-time fee. The Keeper Tax app is available for iOS and Android. At the time of writing, it has an average rating of 4.8 out of 5 stars from customers in the App Store and a 4.5-star rating in Google Play.
How does Keeper Tax work?
Freelancers, gig workers, self-employed professionals, and small business owners must set aside money to pay state and federal taxes as tax isn’t withheld by an employer. On top of income tax, self-employed workers usually have to pay self-employment tax, which can take a sizable bite out of your earnings.
Tracking your work-related expenses and claiming them as deductions can help you keep more money in your pocket. Keeper Tax aims to take the hassle out of storing receipts and tracking and monitoring transactions. Here’s a breakdown of its features:
- Expense scans: After you link your credit card or bank account to the app, Keeper Tax will automatically monitor your bank statements to identify tax-deductible expenses. The app can connect to more than 10,000 financial institutions.
- Bookkeeping by text: A Keeper Tax bookkeeper will send you text messages up to once a day to ask if purchases are work-related. You text back yes or no to have your purchases categorized as an expense to write off.
- Tax filing: Keeper Tax can file your taxes each year for an $89 annual tax filing fee.
- Export your data: Instead of filing your taxes with Keeper Tax, you can choose to export your data into a spreadsheet.
Besides the actual service, Keeper Tax offers some free tax tools. There’s a calculator you can use to estimate your quarterly tax payments and a tax bill calculator that can estimate how much you’ll owe for the entire year. These calculators can help you figure out how to manage your money each month so you don’t get surprised with an unforeseen tax bill.
The website also has guides that discuss self-employed tax tips, such as how to qualify for home office and car-related deductions.
Keeper Tax: products and pricing
Here’s a rundown of the Keeper Tax product offerings and how much they cost:
|Expense tracking||14-day free trial, and then $24 per month|
|Annual tax filing fee||$89|
|Export data fee||$39|
The Keeper Tax expense tracking service costs $24 per month. However, there’s a 14-day free trial period where you can use the service for free to determine whether it’s right for you.
Keeper Tax charges $89 to file your state and federal taxes for the year. If you work with an accountant (or you want to file with another service), there’s a $39 one-time fee to export a spreadsheet with your work-related expenses.
Keeper Tax: pros and cons
So we’ve covered what Keeper Tax is, how it works, and who it’s for. What are the pros?
- Potential tax-bill reductions: Keeper Tax connects to your financial accounts and scans your transactions to identify possible tax write-offs that could save you money.
- Easy record keeping: Recording what is and isn’t tax-deductible is simple; you just tell Keeper Tax through text which purchases are work-related or not.
- The trial is risk-free: You can use the service for free for 14 days.
- Free resources and tools: Keeper Tax offers free tools like quarterly estimated tax calculators. Estimating your tax payments early in the year could help you avoid making costly quarterly tax mistakes.
As for the cons, here are some drawbacks to keep in mind when considering Keeper Tax.
- Limited accounting features: Managing your expenses with Keeper Tax will cost you $288 per year. However, the service doesn’t come with accounting features and reports you could get with a system like Quickbooks. That said, Quickbooks doesn’t appear to offer the convenience of purchase categorization through text. If you like that feature, Keeper Tax, despite being limited in its accounting features, could be the better choice.
- Multiple paywalls: Filing your federal and state taxes with Keeper Tax costs $89, but you might be able to get your taxes filed for free elsewhere. People who make less than $69,000 per year are able to file for free with IRS partners. If you decide to export your data instead of filing your taxes with Keeper Tax, the fee is $39.
FAQs about Keeper Tax
Is Keeper Tax legit?
Keeper Tax is a legitimate company created in 2018 and accredited by the Better Business Bureau. Although the Better Business Bureau gives Keeper Tax an A rating using its proprietary grading system, customers give it less-than-stellar feedback on the bureau’s site.
Most customers unhappy with the service left a negative review of the actual tax-filing process. Based on that feedback, you might choose to use the app to track and monitor your working expenses and go with another (possibly free) tax filing service for the actual filing.
How much does Keeper Tax cost?
Keeper Tax offers a free trial for 14 days. Afterward, the fee for expense tracking is $24 per month. In addition, if you use Keeper Tax to file your federal and state taxes, there’s an $89 fee.
People who make less than $69,000 can file federal taxes for free with one of the IRS partners. If you use the app, you might want to consider exporting information from Keeper Tax to input into another tax software. Just keep in mind that there’s a one-time $39 spreadsheet export fee.
Do you need to buy Keeper Tax every year?
Keeper Tax is an expense tracking service that costs $24 per month after a 14-day free trial. At the end of the year, you can choose to have Keeper Tax file your return for an additional $89 fee.
What makes Keeper Tax different from other tax software?
Keeper Tax stands out among the best tax software packages because it specializes in helping independent workers keep track of business expenses. The company also has a mobile app, so a log of your working-related expenses is always at your fingertips.
With that said, self-employed workers running a consulting or creative business might benefit from using a full-service accounting system that tracks expenses, but also tracks invoices and comes with accounting reports, such as profit and loss statements. These reports can help you track how you make money, your expenses, and other performance metrics that help you make business decisions.
The bottom line
Keeper Tax is a service that can take the stress out of tax filing for freelancers and gig workers. Instead of scrambling to find all of your receipts at the end of the year, you can use the Keeper Tax app to monitor your work-related purchases all year round.
Reducing your tax responsibility with potential tax deductions found by the app means you could start the year thinking about what to do with your tax refund instead of trying to pull money together for your IRS tax bill. This can be handy whether you've recently started a business or you have an established client roster.
It’s worth noting, however, that the app does come at a price. There’s a monthly subscription fee, a fee to file, and a fee to export your information. Before signing up for Keeper Tax, consider the price tag and compare it to other expense-tracking and tax-filing services to find the best option for you.