Why the Depreciation Shake-up Gives Off-the-plan Investors an Edge at Tax Time

The year 2017 saw some changes brought about in the rules governing depreciation on investment property in Australia. The attractive option for claiming tax deductions due to the depreciation of the property value saw a cutoff date being applied – 9th May 2017. People who bought a second-hand property after date could no longer claim the deductions, as per the ATO regulations.
An Overview of Depreciation

We know that any asset undergoes wear and tear as it continues to be used. Accounting principles look at this reduction as a standard percentage of the value which gets reduced from the value of the asset. Under tax laws, this depreciation amount could be set off as a deduction from the tax payable. This would make a substantial change in the cash flows of a property owner. Based on the cost of the property, maintenance costs, reduction in value, and the reduction in tax payable, the depreciation could impact the net yield on investment property.
The New Tax Law

From May 9th onwards in the year 2017, second-hand property purchased would not attract the tax deduction. The only two categories allowable were new assets added to older homes and assets in new homes would allow admissible deductions. Those who were off this new plan could continue to claim under old rules. Also, capital works investments and fixed items added could still be claimed. But any assets that came along with the property went out of the purview of the deduction.
The Better Option between New and Second Hand

Because of this change, property owners needed to rethink their investment strategy. Back of the envelop calculations seem to present a clear picture. It was seen that a new property could work out much cheaper than investing in an older property of the same value. The detailed working of the investment property depreciation schedule ATO would provide a similar answer. What this does is to take the tax benefits out of the equation. So an investor should look at the cost-benefit analysis of the property only. Tax deduction benefits would cease to make a difference to the numbers. So how do the new tax rules affect the comparison between old and new? A property purchased in 2016 might turn out to be of similar value to a brand new property purchased in 2018. This needs investors to recalibrate their calculations carefully and in advance.
Conclusion:

In order to get the best property investment returns, an investor would need to calculate carefully. The best way is to leave it to the professionals. Consultants like Deppro could depute their qualified quantity surveyors to get the math right. They would set up the depreciation schedule according to the purchase date. The ATO has detailed lists of what can be claimed and for how much. These quantity surveyors would work out the numbers in accordance with these ATO guidelines. The amount that such a report would cost could ensure savings of higher amount if the calculations are done by a professional.

7 Questions You Should Ask Your Quantity Surveyor

Before that time of year rolls around again, when you have to file your tax return, you need to begin preparing your documents. While the income and expenditure are fairly straightforward, most people get stuck while preparing their tax depreciation schedules. That is why most people lean on professional tax consultants for this. If you own an investment property or a rental property, you may also require the help of tax depreciation surveyors who can make an assessment of your property and then prepare the submission schedule. Before you hire the services of such a surveyor, there are some important things which you should ask your quantity surveyor.

1. Do You Have Certified People Or Will You Outsource?

The survey work for property depreciation schedules can’t be done by just anyone; only certified and qualified surveyors can do it. But many tax consulting firms outsource the work of surveying to smaller firms. In such cases, you run the risk of having the survey done by someone who isn’t certified. Therefore, it is vital that you check with the firm as to whether they outsource any of their work.

2. Do You Have Insurance Coverage?

Surveying involves a whole lot of measuring at your property, for which surveyors need to often climb ladders or onto roofs. If they suffer a fall or any other kind of mishap, it would pose a major issue. That is why it is advised that you only hire firms who have insurance coverage.

3. What Are The Services You Provide?

The quantity surveyor tax depreciation only do the survey and measurements. After that their would need to prepare your returns as well. That is why you need to find out whether the firm you are employing only does surveys or can they provide end to end services.

4. Do You Have Any Questions For Me?

Every property has its own special features and would be differently treated by tax laws. Before the surveyor begins his or her work, you need to show them around and ask questions about your property. The answers to those questions and the surveyor’s own questions to you would tell you how well the survey would be done.

5. What Elements Would Be Included In The Depreciation Report?

Like we previously mentioned, a quantity survey is the start of your tax declaration and claims process. The Deppro quantity surveyors would finish their job and hand it over to their colleagues who would complete the rest of the process. You need to know from the surveyor what elements he or she will include in the report because that would determine the tax deduction amount.

6. What Categories of Properties Do You Handle?

It is important to learn what kind of properties their firm specialises in. There are firms which would be doing the surveys for commercial or industrial properties only. So, they might not have the required expertise regarding residential properties. It is preferable to work with someone who knows their stuff.

7. What Is Your Fee Structure?

Last but not the least; you need to know how the surveyor would charge their fees. There are some who charge a flat fee, while there are others who charge as per the square feet area of the property. There could be some others who charge a percentage of the total amount in the depreciation schedule.

Conclusion:

Asking the above questions will not only help you know how professional your quantity surveyor is, but it will also help you learn some extra information about your own property.   If you think there should be some more questions which are important to ask your quantity surveyor, please let us know so that we can share those with our readers and customers in our next post.

Discover the Benefits of Claiming Depreciation for a Commercial Property

A person buys additional properties with the plan to monetize the assets. This is usually done by renting these out. But many people are not aware that their property can provide monetary benefits outside the rental income too. These benefits are in the form of possible deductions in tax. This blog post will discuss the different aspects of depreciation tax benefit.

How Depreciation Affects Tax?

We all know that an asset has more value when purchased than the same asset a few years later. This common knowledge is called depreciation in finance and accounting syntax. Depreciation refers to the diminishing of the value of any asset with each passing year. When it comes to residential properties, this reduction in value is made up to some extent by the Australian tax rules. The ATO guidelines allow property owners to claim a deduction in tax amount on the basis of this reduction. This deduction is calculated as per the extant investment property depreciation rules.

The deduction in tax payable is applicable to the following two types of assets on residential properties:

1. Capital Works Deductions:

This is the deduction applicable to the capital assets of a property. In simpler language, it refers to the immovable part of a building, like walls, floorings, tiles, doors and windows, wiring, etc. The only thing a house owner needs to keep in mind is the cut off date for the enforcement of this legislation. All properties constructed after 20th July in the year 1982 would be eligible for this deduction. Capital works deductions on properties constructed before this date would be eligible only for repairs, renovations, etc.

2. Plant and Equipment Depreciation:

This is the second way under which claiming depreciation on investment property is allowed under ATO guidelines. This is applicable for all the removable parts of a building. In the ATO guidelines, a complete list of around 1500 such items is provided. Some examples are upholstery, electrical gadgets, air conditioners, etc. A typical building is considered by the ATO to have a useful life of 40 years. But the movable assets listed under plant and equipment have much smaller life spans listed under the guidelines.

Why You Need a Professional Help for Claiming Depreciation?

Most people consider basic financial aspects while purchasing an investment property. But if one considers the tax benefits from the depreciation perspective, the picture changes a lot. The problem with these calculations is that a layman might not be able to do them accurately. A professional company would be able to help in the following two ways:

  • Before purchase, they would help with the calculations of the tax implications of depreciation.
  • After purchase, these companies and their teams would help file tax returns accurately, taking depreciation into consideration.

This is why most prospective buyers consult these experts before the purchase decision.

Conclusion:

A home can be a financial boon in more ways than we think. Experienced and dependable consultants like Deppro can help an investor maximise tax savings by creating an accurate depreciation schedule. They could also ensure that multiple deductions are not claimed by mistake.

Depreciation Schedules – By Independent Property Inspectors

Depreciation refers to the decline in value of a commodity or an asset. In terms of tax depreciation schedules, the term corresponds to a tax deduction or compensation for wear and tear caused to a piece of property. Rented houses, that constitute the property of taxpayers, have a tendency of suffering damages in the course of time and thus the term depreciation comes into action.

Depending on the value of a property, the property depreciation schedule of a piece of property can amount to a significant amount of money for a property owner. Whether a property is new or old, the compensation for its renovation does amount to a certain value. Keeping this in mind, a property owner must try their best to do everything to lay a claim on the tax deduction of mending or renovation.

How Does a Tax Depreciation Schedule Benefit a Property Owner?

A tax depreciation schedule is prepared by a quantity surveyor and it consists of all the components that are eligible for depreciation. The amount of money you invest for the improvement of property comes under tax exemption. That is to say, you will not be taxed for the amount of money that you invest in enhancing its value.

An important thing to bear in mind is that it is easier said than done to meet the requirements of ATO. Hiring a qualified quantifier surveyor is a good idea to make the most of an investment property depreciation schedule ATO. Though you can consider approaching an accountant, a quantity surveyor would be able to provide you with an accurate calculation.

What Amount of Depreciation Can You Expect From Your Property?

ATO tax depreciation schedule is more complicated than what it looks like on the surface. One needs to get to the bottom of the facts in order to gain a proper understanding of the value of tax depreciation for a piece of property.

An important thing to remember is that the value of depreciation depends on the age of a property. Thus, it can vary from one property to the other. Further, your property will be eligible for recovery of compensation only if you have built it after 1985.

Tax depreciation in connection with a property does not cover the land on which it stands. Even if your property was built before 1985, you can receive depreciation on all Plant and Articles.

Final Thoughts:

It is important to conduct the depreciation of a property due to a variety of reasons. Firstly, it necessitates a property owner to carry out a thorough inspection of their property. This can help an owner identify all the existing problems in their asset.

Further, it also encourages an owner to promote the value of a property with the assurance that the costs for improvement will not come under the slab of taxation. A piece of property which undergoes maintenance and improvement from time to time remains in proper shape for long-term use.

6 Important Duties & Responsibilities a Quantity Surveyor You Should Know

Australian tax depreciation consists of a number of aspects. It is easier said than done to fully understand the legal elements within it and therefore make an informed decision based on one’s understanding. Most home owners consider hiring a quantity surveyor to ease the workload.

A quantity surveyor discharges numerous responsibilities on behalf of their client. They undertake the following duties and responsibilities:

1. Cost Estimating:

This role involves observing all the minute details related to a building and evaluating them to estimate the possible cost of its construction. A surveyor takes design preferences and the regulations into consideration in order to come up with the right cost estimate.

2. Cost Planning:

Cost planning is all about a comparison between the actual cost of constructing a building and the budget for the project. This not only throws light on the problematic areas but also enables owners to come up with the right kind of documentation.

3. Cost Studies:

The dynamics of the real estate sector are changing day by day and the trend is likely to remain that way in the upcoming years. Quantity surveyors use cost studies to study the difference in costs between two similar projects. They prepare a tax depreciation report based on it to help their clients formulate the right kind of budget plan.

4. Time Management:

Punctuality is a vital element of success for every business endeavour. And it is all the more important in the case of construction and the real estate industry. A quantity surveyor evaluates all the factors linked to the construction of a building so a project can be executed within a given timeframe.

5. Payments to Stakeholders in Time:

It is one of the important responsibilities of Deppro quantity surveyors to take care of the payments to stakeholders in a timely manner. This lends a helping hand in avoiding disputes related to payments.

6. Timely Visits to the Site:

An analysis of the progression of a project is one of the imperatives of the success of a project. It makes perfect sense on the part of an investor to invest in a project which is doing well. At the same time, it is also important to identify poorly performing projects and look for opportunities for cost savings.

A qualified quantity surveyor holds discussions with all the stakeholders to find out if things are working fine. Thereafter, they share the updates with their clients based on their findings.

Conclusion:

The above duties and responsibilities highlight the important role of tax depreciation quantity surveyors for both existing and potential owners of properties. They are the virtual assistants who make things simple and easy.

Do You Really Need A Quantity Surveyor?

Every team engaged in construction has different specialists with different skillsets. One of the most important and interesting roles is that of a quantity surveyor. This role combines the knowledge of engineering and finance. People argue whether all construction projects need a project surveyor or not. In our opinion, every project should have one. But there is another area of work where the role of quantity surveyors is even less understood.

Tax Returns and Quantity Surveyors

Australian tax rules state that owners of investment properties should file tax returns. This process requires qualified and experienced tax depreciation surveyors. So, let us properly understand the process of property tax. This way, the importance of quantity surveyors can become clearer as well.

When you own a property, there are two types of additions to that property.

  • The first is capital goods, which indicates the permanent structures.
  • The second refers to the extra items which are removable.

Good tax depreciation quantity surveyors can list all the elements of your property. After this, they distribute them into these two categories.

The Contribution of Tax Surveyor in Filing Tax Returns

The reason we need quantity surveyors for this is not only to create a list. With their training and experience, they would be able to put the correct pricing on each item. They can also calculate the depreciation allowable on each item. This would be according to Australian tax rules. Based on the quantity survey, the quantity surveyor tax depreciation list gets created. It is then made part of the owner’s tax returns. The right work by the quantity surveyor would ensure that tax is not paid when unnecessary. It also ensures nothing important is missed during the filing of returns.

The Importance of a Quantity Surveyor

This was only an example of a specific job that is impossible without a quantity surveyor. If a non-qualified person does it, there could be financial and legal implications. But if we talk about general construction teams as well, we can’t ignore the role of a quantity surveyor.

Conclusion:

The cost and efforts involved with hiring qualified Deppro quantity surveyors might be high but they get repaid because of their contributions. This holds true not only in general construction work. It is especially true in specific jobs like tax returns and depreciation lists. The benefits of hiring a professional quantity surveyor are most usually in financial aspects. But they also help in ensuring that the technical aspects are correct too. If your project team does not have a quantity surveyor yet, it is high time you consider it.

Are You Missing Out On Tax Depreciation Claims?

So many Australians miss out on property tax deduction claims every year. Tax depreciation on property investment is a legitimate deduction which the government allows you to claim. Due to the of lack of information on investment property depreciation rules, tax savings worth thousands of dollars are missed out.

Claiming for a tax deduction on the value of your property seems difficult but with the help of a professional expert, it can become really easy. Claiming depreciation can make a huge difference in a property investor’s cash flow. Despite all of this, it is most often missed.

That is where DEPPRO comes in.

What can be Done to Not Miss Out on Tax Depreciation Claims?

In Australia, only 30% of property investors claim deductions for the depreciating value of their property. It is nothing but a non-cash expense which you can claim every year on your property depreciation. You do not need to spend any cash to make this claim.

You are claiming on the declining value of your building or asset. Of course, there are certain conditions like any other tax deduction. If you have a residential property which was built before 1985, then you can claim depreciation on Division 40, Depreciating Assets only. But if it was built after 1985, then you can claim under Division 40 as well as Division 43.

The Tax Depreciation Schedule

A Quantity Surveyor is an official who is professionally qualified to produce a legal tax depreciation schedule by the ATO. It includes the following two divisions:

  1. Division 40: Depreciating Assets: This element of property depreciation schedule is all about assets like plant and equipment, lights, fans, carpets, floating floorboards, smoke alarms, air conditioners, refrigerators and so on. Every item which has a diminishing life is included in this. The tax deduction calculation, according to the investment property depreciation schedule ATO, is carried out based on the effective life of the items.
  2. Division 43: Capital Works Allowance: The immovable parts of the structure like the building, walls, roof, swimming pool, built-in furniture, toilets etc. are a part of this division. The investment property depreciation rules state that this capital works allowance is calculated on the basis of the construction cost of the building and not the current purchasing price. So if you are buying a property, you can claim a deduction based on the original construction cost while the building was made.

How Can DEPPRO Help You?

We have been in the industry for more than 12 years now and have a passion for tax saving. Our team has industry-leading skills and can assist in all areas of investment property taxations. We are always updated and are well-versed with all the latest Australian Taxation Office (ATO) rulings, investment property depreciation rules, and interpretations for our clients.

The property depreciation schedule made by us ensures that our clients get maximum tax benefits and at the same time it complies with all the latest ATO regulations. If you have the property of your own and make money owning it, get a qualified surveyor immediately to perform a tax depreciation schedule. We have offices all over Australia. Contact the one nearest to you today!

Is it Worth Obtaining a Quantity Surveyor Report?

Have you invested in a rental property in Australia which was built in a year preceding 1987? If so, then things might be different for you than for those who bought their property in the following years. You may be confused in regards to getting a tax depreciation report from one of the qualified tax depreciation surveyors in your city.

Is obtaining a quantity surveyor’s report worth the effort, time and money? Read on to find out.

What Does a Depreciation Schedule Involve?

A quantity surveyor is a dedicated professional who works on depreciation schedules and the capital allowance of investors. When they complete both, it includes two essential elements: equipment depreciation and capital work deductions.

What Is Capital Works Deduction and Why Is It Important?

Capital works deduction is a form of tax deduction which relates to the structural aspects of a building. These include irremovable or fixed assets like tiles, doors, sinks, windows, walls, roof, etc.

Because it is next to impossible to remove these assets, capital works deduction, in the tax depreciation reports, assumes its importance. This prevents an investor from feeling the pinch on their finances at the subsequent stages.

Is there any Hard-and-Fast-Rule Related to Quantity Surveyors which one Needs to keep in Mind?

For the successful generation of these reports, it is imperative that tax depreciation quantity surveyors, who undertake the responsibility, are registered tax agents. This is all the more important in view of the fact that the information in the document relates to particular tax advice.

How Getting A Quantity Surveyor’s Report Helps?

According to the current version of tax legislation in Australia, any residential or commercial property built before September 15, 1987, and July 20, 1982, respectively, are not eligible for deduction.

As a result, an investor may not even consider the need to obtain a surveyor’s report if their date of purchase of property does not make them eligible for it.

However, it is a good idea to enquire about the possibility for a deduction, even if the property in question is 100 hundred years old. Owners of old properties carry out renovations more often than not, and this makes an investor eligible to make depreciation claims after its purchase.

A new buyer can file a claim for it in the event the previous owner carries out any repair or renovations on it after the aforementioned dates for residential and commercial properties.

So, as you would have come to know, getting a depreciation report is your best bet to make a claim for it in a timely manner.

Whether it is ATO guidelines or other tax depreciation laws in Australia, things keep changing from time to time. Therefore, it is a good idea to get in touch with depreciation service firms such as Deppro Perth. While you may spend a little in terms of fees, the dividends it may pay can make it worth the investment.

How is Depreciation Applied Following Natural Disasters?

Natural disasters are one of the leading causes of damage to properties. Situations involving such disasters often necessitate owners to substitute various assets. At times, depending on the degree of damage, they may also feel the need to rebuild their properties.

Though it can be a challenging task for both owners and tenants alike to deal with such a situation, there are ways to mend it. As it can be expensive, owners consider linking it to tax depreciation schedules. If you do not know much about depreciation, here are the things you need to know to maintain depreciation deductions for damaged properties:

Assessment and Depreciation of Disaster-Stricken Properties:

According to Australian tax rules, it is important on the part of an owner to submit a report on a damaged property to claim the expenses. Regardless of whether you repair, replace or improve an asset, you need to submit the property report to the concerned authorities.

Furthermore, the consequences may differ slightly, based on whether the property in question is an insured property or an uninsured one. Depending on whether or not the inspection of a property has been done, there can be two set of possibilities for an owner which are as follows:

A Quantity Surveyor Has Inspected the Property:

In this scenario, the owner can make adjustments to the original report and apply it without spending a huge amount of money. This also saves a lot of time and hassle.

A Quantity Surveyor Has Not Inspected the Property:

This can be a little tricky to handle. In this case, a property owner needs to contact a quantity surveyor for a thorough inspection of the property as soon as possible. The rationale behind it is to prepare a property report in a timely manner. When one fails to complete this quickly, it can land one into various complicated circumstances.

If you repair an asset, you can claim the deduction of the expense for it, irrespective of whether you have insured your property. The capital allowance values and the individual depreciable asset will need adjustments for the replacement of insured properties. For uninsured properties, the residual value of the replaced asset will cease to exist and forecasting of depreciation of new asset will follow.

What Should An Owner Do to Get the Right Depreciation Rate for Their Property?

The extent of ATO depreciation rates varies from case to case, depending on the kind of damage from a natural disaster.
In order to understand the ATO guidelines, it is important to gain an in-depth knowledge of various aspects related to filing the Australian tax return. You need to reach out to an expert for information about the scope of maximizing the future, present of previous depreciation claims.

Conclusion:

The preparation of the property report according to the ATO guidelines is your best bet to claim the depreciation expenses in your tax return with success. Unless you are an expert in this field, you should avoid taking it on your own. It makes a lot of sense to assign the task to a qualified professional with years of experience in this connection. This will help you to be on the safe side and prevent the possibility of getting into any legal issue.

Tax Considerations When Investing in Australian Properties as an Expat

Investors invest in Australian property for a number of reasons. Among the other advantages, such as the location and stable investment options, tax advantages constitute one of the primary reasons for the decision.

That said, there is a different set of tax laws for Aussies who live overseas. Does it make it a less attractive option to invest in the properties in Australia? Certainly not, if you make some fundamental considerations before proceeding with your investment decisions. Read on further to find out more about these tax considerations.

Key Tax Considerations for Non-Resident Aussies before Investing In Australian Property

  1. Tax Deductions: If you rent out your newly purchased property in Australia, you can claim tax deductions relating to the costs of maintaining it. This includes both cash and non-cash deductions.
  2. Depreciation: In layman’s terms, tax depreciation is a form of tax deduction which is concerned with the reduction in the renovation and improvements of rental property. You can claim it on your tax filings in connection with your income. It considers the fact that certain improvements such as carpets, kitchen cupboards and curtains that you make to your property on rent are likely to diminish in value over time. This generally happens due to wear and tear.
  3. Negative Gearing: Negative gearing refers to a kind of financial leverage wherein an investor borrows a certain amount of money with the objective of owning a piece of property to generate income. Normally, the piece of property in question is greater in value than the income which is likely to trickle into the wallet of an investor due to the investment.

If you are seeking ideas about claiming depreciation on investment property based on negative gearing, you can use this concept to cut down your losses with respect to your other income sources. This will help you to minimize your overall tax liability and taxable income in a year. Whether you are a native or non-resident Australian, you are entitled to receiving the benefits of negative gearing to reduce your losses.

  1. Capital Gains Tax: Sometimes the value of a property may hit the upward trajectory owing to various reasons. If an investor holds a piece of property for at least twelve months and decides to sell it thereafter, they become eligible to claim the capital gains tax. It involves one’s marginal income tax rate and provides a tax discount on 50% of capital gains to Australian residents. Unfortunately, if you are not an Australian resident you do not receive the benefits unless you qualify for it by meeting certain tax laws.

Conclusion:

When it comes to dealing with Australian tax laws, the wise thing to do is get in touch with an expert from a reputable depreciation service firm such as Deppro. Irrespective of whether you are a resident or non-resident, do not forget to consult the experts from a reputed firm before filing your depreciation claim to be on the safe side. They can be the real guardian angels for you when you are in a state of a fix.