Investment property travel

Travelling to and from your investment property

From 1 July 2017, new rules came into effect that prevent taxpayers claiming a deduction for expenses they incur travelling to and from their residential investment property.

travelThe Government restricted travel deductions to curb "widespread abuse around excessive travel expense claims relating to residential investment properties…This will stop residential property investors from using the tax system to pay for their holidays by claiming costs as a rental expense."

The new rules prevent a deduction from being claimed for a loss or outgoing if it relates to travel and the expense is incurred in gaining or producing assessable income from the use of residential premises as residential accommodation.

The purpose of the travel is not really relevant under these rules. They simply prevent a deduction from being claimed if the travel is undertaken in connection with a residential rental property, which could include travel to inspect the property, undertake repairs, collect rent or meet with real estate agents.

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Shannon McDonald

Meet Collins Hume Accountant and Xero Specialist, Shannon

As an Accountant, Shannon McDonald supports our clients by doing what she describes as 'a little bit of everything' from preparing tax returns and financial accounts to Xero set up and training.

Shannon McDonaldAs someone who first set out to be a physiotherapist but had a change of heart, the accounting profession is all the better for having Shannon in our ranks. 

An experienced regional accountant Shannon is fully across major initiatives, such as Single Touch Payroll, making sure that Collins Hume's clients are informed and ready.

She is also a dab hand at setting up and training businesses on either moving to cloud accounting or migrating businesses from other software to the Xero cloud platform.

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Fake tax debt scam warning

Scam Warning – Scammers may be impersonating Tax Agents

In a recent twist in the 'fake tax debt' scam, we have received increasing reports of a new scam method where scammers impersonate registered agents to lend legitimacy to their phone call.

phishingThe fraudsters do this by:

  • coercing the victim into revealing their tax agent's name, and
  • initiating a three-way phone conversation between the scammer, the victim, and another scammer impersonating the victim's registered agent or someone from the agent's business.

Victims have fallen for this new approach. In one recent example, a victim withdrew thousands of dollars in cash and deposited it into a Bitcoin ATM, fearing Police had a warrant out for their arrest. The phone conversation with the scammers appeared legitimate, and the victim trusted the advice of the scammer 'tax agent'.

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Interest rates

Mortgages & Lending: to fix or not to fix?

With official cash rates on hold for just over 2 years, is now the time to fix your home loan interest rates?

David SeymourIt would be crystal ball gazing to suggest where interest rates are going. We will leave that up to the economists. Some of the trends we are seeing are:

  • Lenders making small adjustments to variable rates as they jockey for position in a competitive market
  • A number of lenders offering special offers to new customers only (meaning existing customers are left on higher variable rates)
  • Mutterings from banks that they are under increased pricing pressure to increase rates
  • Those same banks reducing fixed rates

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Small business accelerated tax rate reduction

Accelerated tax rate reduction for small business

Small business is still a vote winner with the Government and Opposition teaming up to accelerate tax cuts for the sector by 5 years impacting an estimated 3.3 million businesses.

Parliament recently passed legislation to accelerate the corporate tax rate reduction for corporate tax entities that are base rate entities (BREs). Under the new rules:

  • A 26% rate will apply to BREs for the year ending 30 June 2021, and
  • A 25% rate will apply to BREs from 1 July 2021  Read more…