The Essential 30 June Guide

The end of the financial year is fast approaching. We outline the areas at risk of increased ATO scrutiny and the opportunities to maximise your deductions.

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For you


Bolstering superannuation

If growing your superannuation is a strategy you are pursuing, and your total superannuation balance allows it, you could make a one-off deductible contribution to your superannuation if you have not used your $27,500 cap. This cap includes superannuation guarantee paid by your employer, amounts you have salary sacrificed into super, and any amounts you have contributed personally that will be claimed as a tax deduction.

And, if your superannuation balance on 30 June 2023 was below $500,000 you might be able to access any unused concessional cap amounts from the last five years in 2023-24 as a personal contribution.

To make a deductible contribution to your superannuation, you need to be aged under 75, lodge a notice of intent to claim a deduction in the approved form (check with your super fund), and get an acknowledgement from your fund before you lodge your tax return. For those aged between 67 and 75, you can only make a personal contribution to super if you meet the work test (work at least 40 hours during a consecutive 30-day period in the income year).

Charitable donations

When you donate money to a registered deductible gift recipient (DGR), you can claim amounts over $2 as a tax deduction. The more tax you pay, the more valuable the tax-deductible donation is to you. For example, a $10,000 donation to a DGR can create a $3,250 deduction for someone earning up to $120,000 (excluding Medicare levy).

To be deductible, the donation must be a gift and not in exchange for something.

Investment property owners

If you do not have one already, a depreciation schedule is a report that helps you calculate deductions for the natural wear and tear over time on your investment property. Depending on your property, it might help to maximise your deductions.


Work from home expenses

Work from home expenses are an area of ATO scrutiny.

There are two methods of claiming your work from home expenses: the short-cut method, and the actual method.

The short-cut method allows you to claim a fixed 67c rate for every hour you work from home. This covers your energy expenses (electricity and gas), internet expenses, mobile and home phone expenses, and stationery and computer consumables such as ink and paper. To use this method, it’s essential that you keep a record of the actual days and times you work from home because the ATO has stated that they will not accept estimates.

The alternative is to claim the actual expenses you have incurred on top of your normal running costs for working from home. You will need copies of your expenses, and your diary for at least 4 continuous weeks that represents your typical work pattern.

Landlords beware

If you own an investment property, a key concept to understand is that you can only claim a deduction for expenses you incurred in the course of earning income. That is, the property needs to be rented or genuinely available for rent to claim the expenses, not being used by family/friends or when it’s taken off the market.

There are a series of issues the ATO is actively pursuing this tax season. These include:

  • Refinancing and redrawing loans – you can normally claim interest on the amount borrowed for the rental property as a deduction. However, where any part of the loan relates to personal expenses, or where part of the loan has been refinanced to free up cash for your personal needs (school fees, holidays etc.,), then the loan expenses need to be apportioned and only that portion that relates to the rental property can be claimed.
  • The difference between repairs and maintenance and capital improvements. While repairs and maintenance can often be claimed immediately, a deduction for capital works is generally spread over a number of years. Repairs and maintenance expenses must relate directly to the wear and tear resulting from the property being rented out and generally involve restoring the property back to its previous state. Capital works however, such as structural improvements to the property, are normally deducted at 2.5% of the construction cost for 40 years from the date construction was completed. Where you replace an entire asset, like a hot water system, this is a depreciating asset, and the deduction is claimed over time.
  • Co-owned property – rental income and expenses must normally be claimed according to your legal interest in the property. Joint tenant owners must claim 50% of the expenses and income, and tenants in common according to their legal ownership percentage.

Gig economy income

Since 1 July 2023, the platforms delivering ride-sourcing, taxi travel, and short-term accommodation (under 90 days), have been required to report transactions made through their platform to the ATO under the sharing economy reporting regime. This is the first year that the ATO will have the income tax returns of taxpayers to match to this data.

All other sharing economy platforms will be required to start reporting from 1 July 2024.

For your business


Bonus deduction

What is certain is the bonus 20% deduction for eligible expenditure for external training provided to your employees. The ‘skills and training boost’ is available to businesses with an aggregated annual turnover of less than $50 million. To claim the boost, the training needs to have been provided by a registered training provider and registered and paid for between 29 March 2022 and 30 June 2024. Typically, this is vocational training to learn a trade or courses that count towards a qualification rather than professional development.

Write-off bad debts

Your customer definitely not going to pay you? If all attempts have failed, the debt can be written off by 30 June. Ensure you document the bad debt on your debtor’s ledger or with a minute.

Obsolete plant & equipment

If your business has obsolete plant and equipment sitting on your depreciation schedule, instead of depreciating a small amount each year, scrap it and write it off before 30 June.

For companies

If it makes sense to do so, bring forward tax deductions by committing to directors’ fees and employee bonuses (by resolution), and paying June quarter super contributions in June.

Need support or have questions? Talk to HFB today about maximising your outcomes and reducing your risks.

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