Now that we’re (suddenly) in October a lot of tax-payers are scrambling to gather their receipts in order to lodge their income tax assessment. With a variety of online tools now available, some Australians are choosing to self-assess their claims rather than use a Quantity Surveyor or Accountant.
This growing tendency to self-assess in order to try and save money extends to property depreciation claims, with many property investors submitting claims independent of advice from a specialist Quantity Surveyor. These are the sort of people you will meet down at the bar that will proudly tell you how much money they’re saving by not paying “expensive” professional fees. What they are not telling you is how much money they’re missing out on in the process.
The real cost of self-assessing
Although property depreciation is a non-cash deduction, meaning that no money needs to be spent in order to make a claim, paying a little bit extra to have a professional Quantity Surveyor come through and assess your property is one of the best financial decisions you can make. Our experience is that property investors that attempt to self assess the depreciation available on their own property tend to grossly underestimate or completely miss many of the assets that can be claimed.
We often help property investors who have previously been keen self-assessors of property depreciation increase their deductions. Below is a typical self-assessed claim compared to the deductions achieved when using BMT.
Deductions are based on a full financial year of ownership. Depreciation deductions were calculated using the diminishing value method of depreciation.
While a property investor can often self-assess similar capital works deductions to what a BMT Quantity Surveyor might find, only a fraction of the available plant and equipment deductions are often claimed when self-assessed.
In real terms, self-assessing would cost the above investor $7,050 in potential deductions after only the first year. After the first five years this “thrifty” investor would have lost out on $28,200 in deductions. When you consider that self-assessing costs this investor nearly $30,000 in deductions after only five years and that a BMT Tax Depreciation Schedule details forty years’ worth of deductions for each investment property, it becomes clear that our schedules offer exceptional value for money.
Been missing out? Good news!
We often receive enquiries from property investors that have been self-assessing for the last couple of years, but want to make the switch to professionally prepared depreciation schedules. One thing we enjoy is letting them know that even though they might have been under-claiming previously, they do not have to miss out on all of those deductions. The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) allows property investors to reclaim up to two years’ previous tax returns and regain those deductions back in full.
Putting every dollar you get back from the ATO to good use now, you could be well on the way to financial freedom in a few years’ time. Don’t put it off any longer – request a quote today and start claiming deductions sooner.