How Small Business Owners Can Combine Section 179 and Cost Segregation to Reduce Tax Liabilities and Improve Cash Flow

Maximizing Tax Benefits for Small Business Owners

Maximizing Tax Benefits: How Small Business Owners Can Combine Section 179 and Cost Segregation to Reduce Tax Liabilities and Improve Cash Flow

For small business owners, navigating the complexities of tax planning and management is essential for maintaining financial stability and maximizing profitability. Two powerful strategies that can significantly impact tax liabilities and cash flow are Section 179 and cost segregation. By understanding how to leverage these strategies effectively, small business owners can unlock substantial tax savings and enhance their bottom line.

Understanding Section 179 and Cost Segregation

  1. Section 179: Section 179 of the Internal Revenue Code allows businesses to deduct the full purchase price of qualifying equipment and property in the year it is purchased and placed into service, rather than depreciating the cost over several years. This accelerated depreciation can provide immediate tax benefits and improve cash flow for small businesses.
  2. Cost Segregation: Cost segregation is a tax planning strategy that involves identifying and reclassifying certain components of a commercial property to accelerate depreciation deductions. By segregating building components into shorter recovery periods, such as personal property or land improvements, businesses can increase depreciation deductions and reduce taxable income.

Maximizing Tax Benefits Through Integration

When used in conjunction, Section 179 and cost segregation can amplify tax benefits for small business owners, leading to significant reductions in tax liabilities and improvements in cash flow. Here’s how they work together:

  1. Identify Eligible Assets: Small business owners should first identify eligible assets that qualify for Section 179 expensing, such as equipment, machinery, vehicles, furniture, and certain improvements to nonresidential real property.
  2. Perform Cost Segregation Study: Next, business owners should consider conducting a cost segregation study on their commercial property to identify components that can be reclassified for accelerated depreciation. This may include elements such as HVAC systems, electrical wiring, plumbing, and interior finishes.
  3. Accelerate Depreciation Deductions: By utilizing both Section 179 expensing and cost segregation, small business owners can accelerate depreciation deductions on eligible assets, resulting in immediate tax savings and improved cash flow. Assets that qualify for Section 179 can be fully expensed in the year of purchase, while components identified through cost segregation can be depreciated over shorter recovery periods.
  4. Consult with Tax Professionals: Given the complexity of tax laws and regulations surrounding Section 179 and cost segregation, small business owners should consult with qualified tax professionals or advisors to ensure compliance and maximize tax benefits. Tax professionals can help navigate the intricacies of these strategies and develop a tailored plan that aligns with the business’s financial goals and objectives.


Section 179 and cost segregation are powerful tax planning strategies that can provide small business owners with significant tax savings and cash flow improvements. By integrating these strategies effectively, businesses can accelerate depreciation deductions, reduce tax liabilities, and free up capital for investment, growth, and innovation. With careful planning and guidance from tax professionals, small business owners can leverage Section 179 and cost segregation to achieve long-term financial success and maximize their competitive advantage in today’s dynamic business landscape.