You venture out to Prink to stock up on office supplies. When you pay, you make a point to ask for the receipt, then stash it in your trouser pocket. Two weeks later you pull your trousers out of the wash and discover a small lump of disintegrated paper clinging to the inside pocket. Illegible crumbs. Sound familiar?

It’s 2021, and in a country as digitally advanced as Finland there is simply no need to put yourself through this. Not anymore.

When do the self-employed have to keep receipts?

The Finnish tax authority states that if you’re claiming tax credit for business expenses within Finland, you must hold onto your receipts. The same rules apply to the purchase and sale of immovable property (i.e., houses, land).

Receipts prove to the tax office that the business expense was actually made.

If you’re self-employed, you do not need to keep receipts for commuting costs between home and work. However, if you’re required to maintain a driver’s logbook, the logbook should also be retained for future reference.

 

What can you deduct in self-employed taxes?

What counts as a tax-deductible business expense for entrepreneurs in 2021? Read our comprehensive guide to self-employed tax deductions to find out.

 

 

How long to keep receipts?

If you claim a tax deduction for business expenses in Finland, you’re advised to hold onto receipts and documentation for 6 years after the close of the taxable year.

Vero also adds that in certain situations, such as the purchase of property or other capital investments, it may be useful to keep the receipts and documentation even longer. For example, if the property is sold, receipts may prove useful when making calculations to work out taxable capital gains or tax-deductible capital losses.

In what format to keep receipts?

For accounting purposes, you’ll need a receipt for each business-related to prove that the acquisition was actually made. Without a receipt, you can’t deduct the expense from your taxes. So…

Saved receipts = money saved in taxes

There are lots of ways of storing receipts – from shoeboxes to saving receipts electronically. Vero doesn't stipulate how receipts need to be stored, specifying only that 'it is sufficient to make sure that you keep the receipts and documentation in a safe place.' (source)

Can you keep receipts electronically?

Yes. You can and should save receipts electronically. In 2021, saving receipts digitally just makes sense. There’s truly no downside in Finland.

Here are 3 good reasons why you should start saving receipts digitally today.

  1. No lost receipts. When you take a picture of a receipt straight after purchase and save it to your books using the Holvi mobile app, there’s no chance of your losing your receipt.
  2. Easier for you (and your accountant). Transferring electronic receipts is easier than physical paper stacks. Once the information is stored in your records, you don’t have to drive the paper receipts to your accountant.
  3. VAT calculations done for you. Save receipts in Holvi and add VAT rates to each transaction. Holvi will auto-balance VAT paid against VAT collected, so you always know what you owe in VAT.

 

Scan and store receipts in Holvi – for safe (book)keeping

Here’s how receipt scanning works:

  1. Download the Holvi mobile app
  2. Make a purchase using your Holvi Business Mastercard®
  3. You’ll get a purchase notification on your phone
  4. Tap the notification and take a picture of the receipt. Holvi attaches the receipt to your transaction and stores it for safekeeping
  5. Categorise the transaction, select the right VAT rate and add a note (e.g. what was this for?)

If you use Holvi to pay bills, you won't get notifications on your phone but you can still attach a PDF or photo of a printed invoice to the transaction.

  1. Filter transactions to see only payments that are missing receipts and find the payment in question
  2. Open the transaction and attach a file
  3. Add VAT rate and a note – done!

 

Holvi tidies away financial distractions

Saving receipts is nobody’s favourite task, that’s why Holvi makes it as effortless as possible. The best time to save an expense receipt is right after making a purchase.

We built Holvi to help tidy away distractions. By automating away tasks like saving and storing receipts, we help limit a time-consuming but necessary small business distraction.

 

Want to read more Foreign in Finland articles?

We hope this article clarifies how to save and store receipts in Finland. If you want to explore more Foreign in Finland topics, check out: