Research shows that around 80 per cent of property investors are missing out on depreciation claims. If you’re one of those property investors, you could be missing out on thousands of dollars each financial year.
Fortunately, arranging a BMT Tax Depreciation Schedule is simple and stress-free. BMT Tax Depreciation takes a comprehensive approach to preparing depreciation schedules for both residential and commercial property to ensure every deduction is maximised.
In this article we will look at:
- An overview of the BMT process
- Quantity surveyors in the BMT process
- Property managers in the BMT process
- Accountants in the BMT process
An overview of the BMT process
The BMT process begins when you request a quote for a tax depreciation schedule. This can be done by phone or online. Once you’ve requested a quote, we’ll collect the basic information we need from you in one go and do some initial calculations to ensure the schedule is worthwhile. This includes simple details like:
- the name you would like to appear on the report
- the property address
- purchase information
- you property manager and accountant details.
For residential investors, we can then contact your property manager or tenant to arrange access for a property inspection. Using their expertise, BMT site inspectors will thoroughly assess the capital works and plant and equipment assets found within your property. In the case of apartments or strata complexes, this includes all common property items where legislation allows.
From there, our depreciation and tax specialist team will review the information gathered, do additional research to establish construction and purchase dates, check for any additional works and prepare your tax depreciation schedule. We can even forward your schedule to your accountant directly, saving you time.
Given the 2017 legislation changes, it’s essential to contact a specialist quantity surveyor to assess your property. Both new and old residential investment properties have substantial depreciable value. On average, we find residential investors a first full financial year claim of almost $9,000.
In commercial properties, both the owner and tenant can claim depreciation deductions. Our tax depreciation schedule can include separate reports where multiple entities or tenants control different assets or have different acquisition dates.
All schedules for commercial property are prepared according to their particular industry. We’ve completed thousands of schedules for all commercial property types including agricultural industries, manufacturing, automotive and mechanical, industrial and warehouse, hospitals and medical centres.
Using industry specific legislation, a specialist site inspector will assess your property to ensure every deduction is uncovered and maximised. This includes any fit-out installed or assets removed during an upgrade or renovation.
When construction work or assets are removed from a property during its income production period, there is often remaining unclaimed depreciation that can be written off. BMT staff are experts at calculating this residual amount and will make the necessary adjustments to your schedule.
Now that you have a good understanding of the BMT process, let’s look more closely at the specialists involved.
Quantity surveyors in the BMT process
Quantity surveyors are qualified professionals who specialise in building measurement and estimating the value of construction costs. They get involved at various stages throughout a buildings construction and use their skills to ascertain the costs of building works on any project. A specialist quantity surveyor:
- documents every qualifying asset in a property
- calculates their depreciable value to ensure that the investor maximises their deductions
- ensures full compliance with Australian Taxation Office (ATO) regulations, meaning all deductions are accurately evidenced in the event of an audit.
To work as a quantity surveyor in Australia, you’re required to gain qualifications in quantity surveying or construction management by competing a university degree. You’re then required to do two years’ worth of logbook experience before undergoing a panel interview with the Australian Institute of Quantity Surveyors (AIQS) and the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.
When looking for a quantity surveyor, check that they use their own specialist staff rather than contractors for parts of the process. This is important in the evidence of an audit or if the ATO have any questions regarding the process.
Another crucial thing to be aware of is referral fees. Ensure that there are no referral fees or kickbacks being paid. You want to use the best in the business, not the quantity surveyor who is paying the most.
It’s also important to be aware that not all quantity surveyors specialise in tax depreciation. Only a tax depreciation specialist such as BMT can be relied on to maintain detailed knowledge of all current ATO Tax Rulings relating to depreciation.
Property managers in the BMT process
As a part of the BMT process, we will collect the necessary information on who to contact in order to arrange a site inspection. As properties need to be income producing before depreciation can be claimed, we’ll often need to speak with your property manager to arrange access to your investment property. We’re flexible with these arrangements to ensure minimal disruption to your tenant during this period.
Working with your property manager allows for easy organisation, helps the tenant or tenants to understand why the site inspection is taking place and eliminates admin for you as the landlord.
BMT also provides a number of services and tools to help inform property managers on depreciation benefits including New to Rent. New to Rent gives property managers complimentary depreciation estimates tailored to each rental property listed by their agency. The estimates highlight the difference depreciation can make to your cash flow and will help you to determine your after-tax position.
Accountants in the BMT process
Your accountant is often one of the last to find out about your investment property. This means there’s often a lot of last minute activity to be completed within a short timeframe to ensure that your claim is maximised at the end of each financial year. That’s where BMT can help. A BMT Tax Depreciation Schedule provides accountants with all the necessary information to lodge an accurate claim.
We also provide access to MyBMT that can help you stay connected with your investment property team. The free platform offers easy access to depreciation information, invoices and receipts, and property income and expenses. By using MyBMT, your accountant will be able to view and update your depreciation schedules and download them in CSV or Excel format. They’ll also be able to check the likely deductions on your property before ordering a schedule, help keep track of property income and expenses, upload files and views your receipts all with the click of a button.
To register for MyBMT, visit mybmt.bmtqs.com.au today.