Tax Time Tips for Property Investors

If you are one of the 2 million people in Australia* that have investment property, whether negatively or positively geared, tax time means getting your things in order to maximise your deductions, including your loan interest expenses.

Here’s 5 Top Tips this tax time:

1) Understand all of the deductions categories.

Expenses include; mortgage interest, bank charges, council rates, water rates, cleaning, pest control, gardening, repair and maintenance cost, insurance, body corporate fees, advertising for tenants and agent management fees, capital works, depreciation, insurance, land tax and travel to inspect or maintain the property. Whilst you may have a good accountant, it is important for you to have an understanding of what can be claimed in order to provide them with the best possible information for deductions.

2) Don’t forget depreciation and capital works.

You can claim depreciation for the decline in value of the assets in your investment property such as hot water systems, carpets and heating and cooling systems. You may also be able to claim capital works expenses from the construction of the property, usually over 25 to 40 years. These deductions can be significant, particularly in new properties. The easiest way to understand and calculate depreciation and capital works, is to invest in a tax depreciation report from specialists such as BMT.

3) Ensure you keep records.

If you rent your investment property through an agent, they may handle the vast majority of your property expenses and provide you with an annual statement with these classified according to the taxation requirements. It is likely though you also incur expenses; such as interest on your investment property loan, bank charges, insurance, travel expenses and possibly land tax. The ATO is known to audit investment property owners and adequate receipts and records including those provided by your agent need to be kept for a minimum of 7 years.

4) Don’t forget the impact of capital gains when it comes time to sell.

There can be substantial tax advantages of investing in property, however keep in mind when it comes time to sell there may be tax payable on any capital gains. For property owned over 12 months, the 50% discount applies. It may also be possible to time capital gains with other capital losses. It’s best to speak to your accountant before making plans to sell your investment property to plan for the capital gains impact.

5) Have a great accountant!

Last but not least, make sure you have a good accountant that is across all aspects of investment property to keep you on the right track and maximise your investment deductions.

For more information you can refer to the ATO’s guidelines on expenses and depreciable assets or talk to your accountant.

 

Douglas Piening is a Mortgage and Finance Broker with Choice Home Loans and is passionate about providing advice you can trust. Whether it’s buying a home, refinancing a loan, investing, building or renovating, Doug brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to assist with your lending needs. 

You can contact Doug at (e) douglas.piening@choicehomeloans.com.au or (m)  0408 671 524.

Want to hear what clients have said about working with Doug? Take a look at these reviews from LinkedIn and Facebook.

This information is of a general nature only and does not constitute professional advice. You should always seek professional advice in relation to your particular circumstances.

 

* Source: ATO https://www.ato.gov.au/About-ATO/Research-and-statistics/In-detail/Taxation-statistics/Taxation-statistics-2014-15/?page=5

Why is your investment loan rate going up?

Changes to Investor Lending

Over the past several weeks we have seen the banks make changes to their lending policies, in particular around investment and interest only loans. Following some more discreet changes by some of the second tier lenders, over the past fortnight we have seen a number of significant announcements from the major lenders:

CBA on the 22nd of July – increasing the rate on investor loans by 27 basis points

ANZ on the 23rd of July – Increasing the rate on Investor loans by 27 basis points

NAB on the 29th of July – increasing the rate on investor and interest only loans by 29 basis points

Other such as AMP are ceasing all investor lending as well as imposing an additional 47 basis points on existing lenders.

Clients have asked why this is the case and quite simply it is in response to calls from the lenders regulator (Australian Prudential Regulatory Authority) asking them to slow growth in the investment space to less than 10% and tightening capital controls.  This is being done in an environment where policy makers are under pressure around housing affordability, whilst at the same time worried about a slowing economy.

It is the opinion of this humble Broker that these measures will only reduce the returns available to investors, which will in turn force the hand of landlords to recover these costs through higher rents, perversely achieving the opposite of the desired housing affordability.

What does that this mean for you? All is not lost. Speak to your Mortgage Broker as it is our job to find solutions and the best outcomes for our investor clients. There are still lenders out there offering great deals and there are strategies available which can minimise the cost to borrowers in many cases.

 

Do you have an investment loan rate that has recently increased? What will the annual increase in $ represent for you?

 

Like to discuss your investment property loan?

telephone Call Douglas today on 0408 671 524

 

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