From Craig’s desk
The Team at Vault welcome you to the February newsletter. This month we cover the 2023 tax return process, look at what you can (and can’t) claim, give you some pointers on starting a business and give you our thoughts on creating a realistic personal budget.
In January we celebrated two years since we merged our practices; Vault Accountants and C&D Restructure , it has been an interesting adventure so far. Thankfully Range Brewing has been a help in smoothing out the bumps. We have built a remarkable Team during that time, they are the core of the Vault experience.
January brought some new team members and we welcomed Jim Bryant’s practice into the fold. We had four new team members join us in the bookkeeping and accounting team. We will be introducing the Team over the next month as they settle in. To meet the Team click here.
We are pleased that our Inverell office has finally been fitted out. Feel free to drop in and say hello.
Our Moree office has moved to 381 Frome Street, with front at street parking and no stairs, we welcome you to visit us.
Our city office has moved to Lobby 1 Level 2 Gasworks/76 Skyring Terrace, Newstead QLD 4006 as it is a heritage building we are still waiting for power, but until then it is still a work in progress.
On the technology front we are launching our chat functionality at the end of February, this will be progressively rolled out across the team during March and April, and will assist you in being able to more appropriately contact the team. The chat functionality will work in a similar way to SMS or messenger and will keep a record of your questions.
We are changing our tax return process for 2023 and will be sending out engagement in late April and early May, this will give you the opportunity to start uploading your documents early and will ensure that you get your return as soon as practical. We have reduced the price of the standard tax return for 2023, this will be reflected in the engagements you have received.
As we swing into 2023 proper we look forward to assisting you, and hope you enjoy a prosperous 2023.
Our First Quarter Events
During February and March we are running a range of events covering Xero and business planning.
The team has developed the events calendar which can be found here and there is a guide to what the events are about. We have started rolling out the face to face events in Inverell and will be offering face to face events in Grafton and Moree as well.
We are running events for businesses as well as individuals, these are all complimentary and will be held via Teams. The recordings of the sessions will be made available on the Vault YouTube page.
We are working hard to increase the number of information sessions and events. As we map out the year the calendar is available on our website Upcoming Events – Vault Group
In our March newsletter we will be announcing dates for our first home buyer sessions and our 2023 tax planning sessions which will be both face to face and online.
Over the next month we are running a mix of face to face and online events;
Face to face events
Inverell – Vault Business Basics – 21 February 5.30pm at our Otho Street office.
To join us email email@example.com
Inverell – Vault Business Basics – Where is my profit? – 28 February 5.30pm at our Otho Street office.
To join us email firstname.lastname@example.org
Inverell – Vault Business Basics – Does my balance sheet balance? – 14 March 5.30pm at our Otho Street office.
To join us email email@example.com
Grafton – Vault Business Basics – 14 March 5.30pm, venue to be determined.
To join us email firstname.lastname@example.org
Tax and Crypto – 14 March
Book your tickets here
To download our eBook click here.
Starting a business – 5 April
Book your tickets here
2023 Tax Return Program
With 30 June around the corner we have been looking at some options to make tax time a lot easier and less stressful. For the upcoming year we have set the price for our tax returns lower than the 2022 pricing.
During April and May you will receive your engagement for the upcoming financial year, which will give you access to upload your documents and get the process underway.
Do I have to pay early?
No, as you are a returning client your tax return fee is only payable after the completion of the return. We will let you know when we send out your return.
What if I have paper receipts?
Your link will accept photos of your receipts, so feel free to take a photo and upload them, we do not need paper receipts to be delivered to the office. If you have paper receipts, we offer a limited scanning service, please reach out to your office to see if it’s available.
When will my return be scheduled?
The tax return process is heavily dependant on when the full information is available, we will email you when all the relevant information has been provided and will complete the return within a fortnight of the information being made available. For crypto and returns with managed funds this can take as long as three months before the information has been made available.
We will be releasing a calendar in June with the estimated lodgement dates depending on your situation.
What happened last year?
The ATO did not process any returns for the first two weeks of the new financial year and we expect the same to occur this year. We will commence work on some returns as soon as the year rolls around but we will not be lodging until at least the third week.
Should I hold off if I think I have a tax debt?
We recommend getting the return completed as soon as practical, even if you have a debt as it gives us time to organise payment arrangements or to ensure that you do not end up with tax instalments.
Want to know more?
We are running sessions on the 2023 tax season and pre 30 June tax planning during April and May, keep an eye out on our events page for more details.
What can I claim?
There was a recent UNSW report that 90% of property owner tax returns have errors. This something that we expect the ATO to clamp down on in the future. Next month we will be covering in more depth property owner tax returns.
For individual PAYG employees, the tax system is relatively straightforward but here are some common allowable deductions (and some you can’t).
We are often asked what can be claimed and what is not realistic, some here are some of the common ones.
- Income protection; for a lot of people income protection is one of their few deductions, but it is not as simple as having it. Often times income protection is in the wrong name or held via super. We cover the basics of income protection here.
- Superannuation contributions; you can make deductible superannuation contributions or salary sacrifice during the year, depending on your circumstances.
- Work from home; during covid a lot of us started to work from home, depending on whether or not you still are this may form part of your deductions. To claim work from home it is important to keep a diary of when you did.
- Motor vehicles; it is important that it is related to your employment and that you keep a logbook. We look at how trades can claim there motor vehicle here.
Last year we looked at some of the most common deductions here.
What can’t you claim?
- Non specific clothes; we get asked this a lot, if you can use it elsewhere, chances are that it is not claimable.
- Laundry; this was a regular item that was trying to be claimed, unless you are washing the work uniform that is specific to the role, laundry may not be claimable.
- Entertainment; there are very few industries where it can be claimed and it is often heavily scrutinised, chances are it is not claimable.
You probably should ask
- Space for the home business; this is one that can get tricky, before you think of claiming give us a call.
- Phone and internet; for employees this can be hard to claim and it is one that the ATO is focusing on.
- $300 and no receipts; you need to be able to prove the expense and be able to relate it to work, it is not an automatic deduction.
Need some help? The team will be running sessions on Tax planning for 2023 during April and May, if you have any specific questions reach out to the team at email@example.com
Thinking of starting a business?
A lot think about it, some dabble and a few do it. In January we explored the benefits of running your own business here. Business ownership can be an amazing experience and from the perspective of achieving time, mind and financial freedom this is something that generally only running your own business can give you.
A lot of things change when you start a business and for a lot of first time business owners there is an overwhelming list of things to consider. To good news is that no one got it perfect the first, second or final time they started their business.
To start a business, test your idea. A sample, test or market review will help you understand where your business sits and what the opportunities are. We always recommend someone not in your immediate circle to give you some feedback.
Understand the numbers. Budget, test the budget and then budget again. We see too many business owners start out and not know their numbers. For all new businesses we suggest testing the numbers on the good and bad, and making sure you have the resources to make it through.
Understand your supply chain. If Covid taught us anything it was the supply chain is fickle, make sure you understand what you will need and where they will come from.
Don’t be afraid but don’t forget the risks. Starting a business is hard, and it is not just the financial, look at the time commitment that your business will take and understand that you need to commit not only financially but your time.
Some of the things to consider when starting a business include what your business is, how it will operate, where it will operate and what you hope to achieve from it.
We are running a 3 part event starting 5 April covering from concept to your first day, book your tickets here.
,Creating a realistic budget
We covered some tips to creating a budget. This time of year the resolutions start to wane and old habits kick in, there are lots of tips, tricks and suggestions about how to save, so we thought we would ask the team, some of their best budgeting tips;
Valerie – wait, be prepared to hold off on a major purchase until you have the cash, a little each week can make a world of difference. If you can hold off on something big, plan it out rather than splashing out.
Rolly – Be brave and be willing to make changes in your lifestyle if there is something that you want to strive for. Sometimes a little sacrifice makes it worthwhile.
Craig – I always recommend enjoy little wins, so aim for something to start with that is achievable and as you achieve it go for more. Budgeting needs to be something that ends up being second nature rather than a chore. Whatever you do, don’t cut out the daily coffee! It’s not worth it.
Tyler – A little adds up, some explore your options for regular savings, there are a lot of different platforms, find one that works for you.
Nate – make it realistic, all too often people set budgets that are unobtainable, impractical or not reflective of their lives. Budget for the essentials, but also put money aside for the things you enjoy.
A summary of some tips.
Make the budget realistic.
There are a lot of (free) tools available, use them.
Start small and be consistent.
Little changes will add up.
If you need some budgeting help or need some guidance, reach out to the team at firstname.lastname@example.org or join our budgeting webinar in May.