Used cars as company cars

depreciation, tax office and private use. Here you will find all the facts!


Qonto is the ideal business account.

according to the current travel expenses law, travel expenses are tax deductible. This includes z. B. The additional expenses for meals on full and half days on business trip (see also three-month period). For business trips with the company car, no kilometer rate tax deductible.

When companies provide their employees with company cars, they do not always order brand-new vehicles, but often opt for a used one. The is worth it in more ways than one:

Clear price advantages when buying used cars as company cars

entrepreneurs should always keep an eye on liquidity and costs. For a new vehicle a high list price plus special equipment is due. Already in the first year, the new car then shows an average value loss of 25 percent. After just three years, a car is usually only around the half of its original purchase price value. Subsequently, the value loss usually about five to six percent yearly. Depreciation options compensate to some extent for the high initial losses in value, but young used cars can be acquired much more cheaply as a result and save money directly on the business account when purchased.

Depreciation of company car

In the case of new vehicles, tax offices regularly assume an six years period of use from. This results in an annual depreciation of just under 17 percent of the total purchase price, including all extras. In individual cases – if more than 90 percent of the car is used for business purposes and if other tax requirements are met – a 20 percent special depreciation inquire.

Generally, the six-year period of use the same applies to used cars. However, their age is taken into account, so they can often be written off at higher rates. Examples:

  • A two years old vehicle has an estimated remaining useful life of four years and can be 25 percent be written off.
  • According to three years decreases the expected remaining service life the used car on three years and depreciation increases 33 percent.
  • For all vehicles with an age from four years will be without exception a residual use of two years assumed. Therefore, even if the car is six years old or more, you are allowed to write off 50 percent of the purchase price each year.

Together with small purchase prices compensated the higher depreciation and amortization rate then the higher repair or service costs for an older car.

If the used car is also used privately as a company car

Many bosses allow their employees to use company cars for private purposes. However, this extra cost means that they have to pay one tax the monetary benefit have to, because every car – whether used or new – counts as a company asset. Butthe mere fact that a vehicle is only made available for business trips and the journey between the place of residence and the first place of work or business does not constitute a benefit in kind.

Otherwise, employees are entitled to two options for taxation OPEN:

Tax company car privately with logbook

In the logbook document employees record every trip they make and their nature or the purpose: business and private journeys, plus journeys between work and home. For all costs such as repairs or service collection receipts. If a receipt is missing, you may be able to create your own receipt instead. In the end, the private share of the trips determines the value in use of the total costs, which is to be taxed by the employer for the employee. this method is exact, but costly for the employee.

distance allowance

Employees can also claim this here. however, you have to make sure that your boss pays the actual total cost and not a lump sum taxed. The employer has the option to have imputed income taxed at a flat rate of 15 percent for less bookkeeping work. Such a lump-sum taxed salary later reduces the distance allowance in the deductible business expenses.

The 1 percent rule for company cars

For all those who want to avoid keeping a logbook, the tax office also offers a second option for taxing the private use of new or used company cars: the 1 percent rule.

If more than 50 percent of the journeys are business trips, there are one percent of the domestic list price of the vehicle plus optional extras for the flat rate taxation the imputed income must be. Concrete:

  • Used as new cars, the complete once 45.If the car costs EUR 000, it will be taxed at the individual income tax rate of EUR 450 per month.
  • In addition, further taxes are due for journeys between home and the first place of work: monthly 0.03 percent of the list price with extras for each kilometer of a one-way trip. for a commute of 30 kilometers here: another taxable 405 euro per month.
  • In total, the example results in non-cash benefits of 955 euros per month or 11.460 euros per year, which, at a tax rate of 40 percent, amounts to 4584 euros in taxes due for the employee.

A exact allocation with the logbook method is for many employees much more attractive from a tax point of view and so they are happy to take the extra effort. the situation is more interesting and more favorable for electric company cars or plug-in models until at least the end of 2021: the 0.5 percent rule will cut the tax burden for employees by half.

manage expenses quickly and paperlessly with qonto

No more tedious collection of receipts: after each payment with your qonto business card, receipts are simply attached to the transaction as a scan. With the qonto banking app, you can keep track of all your expenses – wherever you are.

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Christina Cherry
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