With only a couple of weeks to go before the end of the financial year, everyone should be thinking about submitting their tax returns. Now is the time to consider how to maximise your savings.
Powers Financial Group, Accounts & Advisors have outlined some"Top Tax Tips for 2017", and everyone should take note. They outline some key well-known tips (that you might have forgotten about!) as well as some hidden points you might unaware of.
Take a look at what they've advised you to think about before you submit your tax return:
When providing donations to approved charities, remember to ask for the receipt. Any donation over $2 is tax-deductible when provided to approved charities. The easiest way to keep to track of these receipts over a year is to place these receipts in an envelope. Then at the end of the year when it comes to preparing your information for tax purposes, these tax deductions are all in one place. Alternatively, if you are tech savvy, take a photo of these receipts on your phone and email them to yourself for future reference.
Work Related Expenses – Home Office Expenses
Do you ever find yourself working from home sometimes, checking and responding to emails in the evening or the weekends? If so, then you may be able to claim some part of your personal computer as a tax deduction. All that is required is a percentage of time that your computer is used for work purposes as compared to personal use and the cost of the computer. The computer would be depreciated over its lifespan (usually three years) and the work percentage of this depreciation becomes the tax deduction for the next three years.
If you are using the home internet for work purposes and the connection is in your name, then simply estimate the monthly work use as a percentage of the total household use and apply the percentage to the total monthly internet charges.
These days many of us use our mobile phones for both work and private purposes. Part of the monthly phone bill could be a tax deduction. Remember you can only claim the cost of your work-related calls, not your entire phone bill. A good way to keep track of work use is to keep a logbook or record when your personal phone is used, to determine the average percentage of your calls that are work-related.
If you belong to a union or a membership body that is related to your profession and you pay annual fees to be a member, then you can claim the total cost of these fees as a tax deduction.
Income Protection Insurance
If you hold income protection insurance then this type of insurance is completely tax-deductible. Unlike life and TPD insurance, which is not deductible in an individual’s tax return, income protection insurance is tax-deductible due to its inexplicit link to you earning income."
Are these tax tips helpful? The end of the tax year is rapidly approaching, ensure you're fully prepared to get the best outcome from your tax return.