Your end of financial year checklist
The end of financial year has a way of creeping up and catching us unprepared but you can be ready with a to-do list of tasks that you can tick off as you go.
For instance, now may be the perfect time to put a bit extra into your super before 1 July to make the most of the annual contribution caps. And if you're a business owner, we've also got some useful tips to help you manage your financial obligations and plan for the year ahead.
So as the countdown to 30 June begins, here's our checklist to start you on your way or you can contact our team of Accountants and Financial Advisors and leave the hard work to us to manage on your behalf. It's as simple as an email or phone call now, email email@example.com or call 0388503333.
- Confirm if you need to lodge a return
If you received an income through employment or investments during the financial year, chances are you may need to lodge a tax return after 30 June. If you're not sure, find out by using the ATO's online tools or speak to our team.
- Organise your documents
Your tax return needs to show everything you earned between 1 July 2017 and 30 June 2018. As a first step gather your payment summaries from your employer, invoices for any self-employed work you've done, and bank statements that verify your income.
- Identify your investment earnings
Your tax return must also indicate any income you've earned from non-work activities during the financial year (such as dividends).
- Collect receipts for donations or gifts
You may be able to claim a tax deduction for donations or gifts you've made during the financial year to charitable organisations or other eligible 'deductible gift recipients' so you'll need to find all your receipts for these.
- Work out your deductions
Depending on your employment situation you may be able to claim a tax deduction for money you've spent on things like your car or other transport, work uniform, tools, home office equipment or education and training expenses. You may also be able to claim deductions on costs you incur in earning investment income (such as interest payments) and super contributions.
- Calculate child support payments
If you're making child support payments or providing any related benefits, calculate the total you have paid during this financial year. Depending on your circumstances, these costs may be used to reduce your adjusted taxable income. Your adjusted taxable income is used to calculate your entitlement to a range of Government concessions.
Sorting out your super
- Make an after-tax contribution
Annual caps apply for after-tax ("non-concessional") super contributions and can vary dependent on your super balance. There is also a 'bring-forward' rule to be aware of. Super is complex for talk to our financial advice team about how you can make the most of the caps and still play by the rules.
- Start salary sacrificing or making personal tax-deductible contributions
Take advantage of the pre-tax ("concessional") contributions cap by salary sacrificing part of your income into super. Even if you don't reach your cap before 30 June, salary sacrificing might be a strategy worth considering for next financial year, so talk to our financial advisers. In addition, most employees are eligible to make personal tax-deductible contributions, speak to your employer about this strategy.
- Don't exceed your caps
Work out how much you've put into super this financial year and if there's a possibility you've gone above your contribution caps, speak to a financial adviser.
- Find other ways to contribute
If you're a low income earner, you might be eligible for other types of contributions or government payments. Your spouse may also qualify for a tax offset when making a contribution on your behalf. If you're not sure what you're entitled to, ask your financial adviser now so you don't miss out before 30 June.
Taking care of business
- Organise your papework
If you're a business owner, the type of tax return you need to lodge will depend on the structure of your business. Get your profit and loss statement for the financial year, plus your balance sheet, general ledger report and bank reconciliation report, ready in advance of seeing your O'Brien Accountant.
- Reconcile your payroll
If you employ staff, you'll need to give them each a payment summary by 14 July so they can lodge their own tax returns. You can also use this as an opportunity to check that your employees' salaries are in line with award rates and you've paid them the required amount of super.
- Update your financial records
As with each monthly or quarterly Business Activity Statement (BAS) you lodge, make sure you have all the financial documents ready that you'll need. Such as bank statements, a PAYG payment summary, receipts and invoices, plus records of fuel tax and GST.
- Check your depreciating assets
Until 30 June 2018, businesses with a turnover below $10 million per year can now deduct the full cost of any depreciating assets under $20,000 (conditions apply) and a portion of the cost of assets worth over $20,000. If you've made a purchase for your business in the past year, ask our Accountants if you can claim a deduction.
- Work out your deductions
Tax time is also when you should review your stock to see if you can claim deductions on anything your business makes, buys or sells. You may even be able to claim a deduction for things like interest on business loans and overdrafts.
- Plan your spending
As many of your business expenses may qualify for a tax deduction, it's worth thinking strategically about when to pay them. There may be costs you want to pay now so you may claim a deduction for this financial year – and on the other hand, you may want to put off some payments so you can save the deduction for next financial year.
Overwhelmed? We understand tax time for business owners can be highly stressful and sometimes confusing for individuals. Contact our team to take the pressure off and let us manage all of the above tasks for you ensuring you receive the best return whilst also meeting compliance obligations.
Call 03 8850 3333 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.