Tax time can be stressful for so many reasons, and there’s no point pretending otherwise – but if you know how to maximise your return then the worry and hassle may actually seem worth it. The following tips are designed to help you keep more of what you earn. It may also be worth your while to contact a financial advisor like My Wealth Solutions about the best ways to maximise your tax return for 2014.
Know Your Deductions
Make yourself aware of which deductible expenses are applicable to your industry, and then go through your records to ensure you don’t miss claiming a single one. Remember – this is about keeping more of what you make, so take the time to learn the best way of going about this. There are some generic deductions almost everyone can access, so ensure you claim for everything to which you’re entitled.
Keep Good Records
It probably goes without saying, but the best way to ensure you maximise your tax return is to keep well organised records. Forget soiled shoeboxes and carloads of loose receipts (yes it’s been done); set up a system that works for you. Start with getting as many quotes, invoices and receipts sent to you digitally as possible. This way, your email program can do a lot of the filing for you. Consider setting aside a regular hour a week, or a few hours each month, to file your paperwork into the correct category or month. It’s the sort of thing you can probably do in front of the TV during the adverts, and it’ll save you a headache at financial year-end. Being organised means you’re less likely to miss any deductibles. The less time you or your tax agent has to spend on organising your paperwork, the more time can be focused on your tax return.
Load Your Expenses
If you’ve got any large deductible expenses coming up, like replacing a hot water heater in an investment property, see of you can pay for them before 30 June, otherwise you’ll have to wait a whole 12 more months to claim back that cost outlay. Likewise, if you’re due any additional untaxed income, like the proceeds of the sale of an overseas asset, see if you can delay putting it through your accounts until 1 July. This way you can defer paying tax on that money until the end of the next financial year – in the meantime the money can sit in an offset account, or interest earning deposit account, and work that little bit harder for you.
Get A Tax Agent
If your tax returns are fairly simple you may not need a tax agent, but working with one does offer several advantages, and their fees are tax deductible. One of the best reasons for using a tax agent is that you have more time to lodge your return. Not only does this do wonders for your stress levels, but it allows you to leave your hard working monies in place for longer. A few extra months per year, over the life of an investment loan with an offset, can make a very big difference.
There are a whole host of legal ways to ensure you keep more of what you make at the end of the financial year. The more of these tips you take it upon yourself to learn and implement, the better your results will become.
Got a top tip for maximising your tax return? Share it in the comments box below.
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