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National News Australia

Tax time focus on rental property income and deductions

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Tax time focus on rental property income and deductions

AUSTRALIAN TAXATION OFFICE

Income and tax deductions from rental properties is one of the four key areas the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) is focusing on this tax time. It’s an area that’s easy to get wrong, and needs extra care when lodging. The ATO Random Enquiry Program has found that nine out of ten tax returns that reported rental income and deductions contain at least one error, even though most of those property owners were assisted by a registered tax agent.

The ATO is therefore urging rental property owners to ensure they carefully review their records before declaring income or claiming deductions this tax time, and for registered tax agents to ask a few extra questions of their clients.

Assistant Commissioner Tim Loh explained “Registered tax agents can only work with the information they gather from their clients, and we know some clients won’t know everything they need to tell their agent. We don’t expect agents to be Sherlock Holmes, but we do expect them to ask the right questions to ensure their client’s return is right.”

Mr Loh said that rental property owners are urged to ensure they know what income they need to declare and what can be claimed as a deduction.

“We are concerned about mistakes, and in particular, leaving out income or deliberate over-claiming of rental property deductions this year.”

“Getting it right the first time, will ensure you receive the tax refund you are owed, and avoids us knocking on your front door down the track.”

INCLUDE ALL RENTAL INCOME

The ATO receives rental income data from a range of sources including sharing economy platforms, rental bond authorities, property management software providers, and state and territory revenue and land title authorities.

“The amount of data we access grows each year, making it easier and faster for us to spot any rental income that you have charged your tenants, but haven’t declared,” Mr Loh said.

When preparing tax returns, make sure all rental income is included, such as from short-term rental arrangements, renting part of a home, and other rental-related income like insurance payouts and rental bond money retained.

“Income and deductions must be in line with a rental property owner’s ownership interest, which should generally mirror the legal documents.”

GET YOUR EXPENSES RIGHT

Not all expenses are the same – some can be claimed straight away, such as rental management fees, council rates, repairs, interest on loans and insurance premiums. Other expenses such as borrowing expenses and capital works need to be claimed over a number of years. Capital works can include replacing a roof, or a new kitchen renovation. Depreciating assets such as a new dishwasher or new oven costing over $300 are also claimed over their effective life.

Refinancing or redrawing on a rental property loan for private expenses such as holidays or a new car, means that the amount of interest relating to the loan for the private expense can’t be claimed as a deduction.

If income from a rental property in a holiday location is earnt, it needs to be included in tax returns.

“You can claim expenses for the property to the extent that they are incurred for the purpose of producing rental income, not where your family and friends stayed in the property for a mini getaway at mate’s rates, you use it yourself, say at Christmas, or you stopped renting the property out,” Mr Loh said.

“Other circumstances where deductions cannot be claimed include pretending that your property is available for rent when it really isn’t, for example you advertise significantly above a reasonable market rate compared to similar properties or you place unreasonable restrictions on potential tenants.”

“Our 2022 Tax Time Toolkit for Investors also contains a number of fact sheets for landlords, including Top 10 tips to help landlords avoid common tax mistakes. These tips will help you avoid common mistakes and save you time and money.”

SELLING A RENTAL PROPERTY

When selling a rental property, capital gains tax (CGT) needs to be considered and any capital gains or capital losses need to be reported.

When calculating a capital gain or capital loss, it’s important to get the cost base calculation right. Cost base is usually the cost of the property when purchased and any costs associated with acquiring or selling it. These can be things like stamp duty, legal fees, valuations and real estate sales fees. Any capital works claimed as deductions may also need to be subtracted from the cost base.

“If you’ve sold a rental property that was once your home, you may be entitled to partially claim the main residence exemption. You will need to claim this exemption in your tax return when you lodge.” Mr Loh said.

Records of all income and expenses relating to rental properties, including purchase and sale records, must be kept. This ensures all eligible deductions are captured when preparing tax returns and capital gains tax can be calculated correctly when the property is sold.

“It’s also important to note that when selling any property for more than $750,000, vendors / sellers must have a clearance certificate otherwise 12.5% will be withheld.” Mr Loh said.

Clearance certificate applications can take up to 28 days to process so to avoid delays, sellers should apply as early as practical using the online form. Having tax affairs up to date, including all lodgments, helps speed up the assessment of an application and a certificate being issued. The certificates last for 12 months and if selling more than one property in the year, it can be used for multiple sales. Foreign residents are generally not eligible for a clearance certificate but may apply to vary the withholding amount.

Apply for a certificate and find out more at ato.gov.au/FRCGWcertificate

KEEP GOOD RECORDS TO PROVE IT ALL

Records of rental income and expenses should be kept for five years from the date of tax return lodgments or five years after the disposal of an asset, whichever is longer.

“Get your books in order and start keeping records as soon as you make the decision to earn rental income. It makes tax time so much easier for you and your registered tax agent” Mr Loh said.

Adequate records should demonstrate how the expense was incurred for the rental property and the extent they relate to producing rental income. They must include the name of the supplier, amount of the expense, the nature of the goods or services, the date the expense was incurred, and the date of the document.

“We can ask for proof of any claim that you make, so good record keeping is the only way to ensure you can claim everything you are entitled to.”

“Remember, when your return is lodged, you are on the hook for the claims you are making, not the registered tax agent.”

 

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Sydney Swans’ AFLW squad take Community Camp to Newcastle

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Sydney Swans’ AFLW squad take Community Camp to Newcastle

 

The Sydney Swans’ AFLW squad is heading to Newcastle as part of the first-ever league wide AFLW Community Camp program on 6-7 July.

With fewer than two months to go until its third NAB AFLW campaign, the Swans’ players will use the visit to inspire new fans and garner more support in NSW’s second most populated city. The Swans host Collingwood in a blockbuster Friday night clash at North Sydney Oval on Friday, 30 August to kick off the AFLW season.

Women and girls will be front and centre at the Swans’ Community Camp with two sessions specifically relating to girls keen to play footy. An All Girls Super Clinic will be followed by an U9 girls gala day, providing fantastic opportunities for participants to meet elite players and have a kick.

In an action-packed weekend, there will also be sessions for selected women and girls involved in youth and senior football including a leadership forum, an umpiring information session and a coaching masterclass featuring players and coaches from the Sydney Swans.

Participation and Programs Project Manager, AFL NSW/ACT, Simon Smyth, said of the Sydney Swans’ visit to Newcastle: “It’s a great time to be a girl playing footy and we’re grateful the Sydney Swans have chosen Newcastle for the team’s first official AFLW Community Camp.

“This area has a strong connection to footy with AFL Hunter Central Coast one of the country’s oldest-running sports leagues. We’ve seen many Australian rules football legends come out of this area and we hope the Community Camp will inspire some stars of the future.

“I encourage all girls to attend Saturday’s clinic and any under-nine girl with an interest in team sport to try the gala day on Sunday. The Community Camp is also a great time for youth girls and senior women coaches, umpires and players to mingle with elite players and receive a few tips.”

Lord Mayor, Nuatali Nelmes, said City of Newcastle’s ongoing investment in No.1 Sportsground continues to pay dividends for local athletes. “We’re delighted to welcome the Sydney Swans AFLW squad to Newcastle for this highly anticipated Community Camp,” Cr Nelmes said.

“Through City of Newcastle’s 10-year Strategic Sports Plan we’re providing facilities that support universal access and allow for greater female participation in sport. Our $8 million investment into improving and expanding the playing surface and installing new floodlights at No.1 Sportsground was just the beginning of upgrades that are designed to deliver a facility capable of hosting elite-level AFL and AFLW matches.”

All Girls Super Clinic
A great way to mingle with the Sydney Swans AFLW players and play footy-based games. No previous Australian rules football experience needed.

  • Date: Saturday, 6 July
  • Time: 1:30-2:30pm
  • Location: No. 1 Sportsground, Newcastle
  • Ages: 5-12
  • Register: Here

U9 Girls Gala Day
An opportunity for girls under nine years to try Australian rules football in a fun environment with modified rules, including no tackle. Sydney Swans AFLW players will offer support and provide some basic coaching.

  • Date: Sunday, 7 July
  • Time: 11:30am-1:00pm
  • Location: Pasterfield Sports Complex, Cameron Park
  • Ages: 5-8 years
  • Register: Here

Swans AFLW Coach Masterclass
Be a part of the Swans AFLW Coach Masterclass, exclusively available for women and girls looking to gain invaluable insights from the experts.

  • Date: Saturday, 6 July
  • Time: 2:30PM
  • Location: No. 1 Sportsground, Newcastle
  • Register: Coaches will be invited to register via email

U9 Girls competition 2025
For the first time, AFL Hunter Central Coast will offer an U9 Girls competition in season 2025. Girls currently play mixed teams in U9s, with standalone girls sides competing from U11.

NAB AFL Auskick Burst in Newcastle
Participants inspired by the Sydney Swans will have an opportunity to join the fun weekly, with NAB AFL Auskick re-opening in Newcastle from 21 July, offering participants half a season of the Auskick experience and the beloved Auskick pack.

We call it Auskick Burst, with participants bursting on the footy scene and having a great time. Auskick Burst will be offered at a greatly reduced price, which will be revealed before the Sydney Swans’ AFLW Community Camp.

 

For more sports news, click here.

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Man dies after being hit by car – Lake Macquarie

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Man dies after being hit by car – Lake Macquarie

A man has died after being hit by a car at Lake Macquarie.

About 3:15am today (Wednesday 26 June 2024), emergency services were called to Alhambra Avenue, Cardiff, following reports a man had been hit by a car.

Officers attached to Lake Macquarie Police District attended and were told a man had been laying on the road and was hit by a utility.

NSW Ambulance paramedics attended; however, the man died at the scene.

He is yet to be formally identified.

The male driver, aged 45, was taken to hospital for mandatory testing.

A crime scene was established, and an investigation has commenced into the circumstances surrounding the incident.

A report will be prepared for the Coroner.

Anyone with information into the incident or dashcam footage is urged to call police or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

Anyone with information about this incident is urged to contact Crime Stoppers: 1800 333 000 or https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au. Information is treated in strict confidence. The public is reminded not to report information via NSW Police social media pages.

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National News Australia

Woman charged over alleged child approach – Lake Macquarie

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Woman charged over alleged child approach – Lake Macquarie

A woman has been charged following an alleged child approach at a Lake Macquarie shopping centre over the weekend.

About 12.30pm on Sunday 23 June 2024, a couple and their two children aged 2 and 10 months were in a shopping centre at Glendale, when a woman, who was not known to the couple, allegedly took hold of the pram containing the two-year-old girl.

The woman attempted to push the pram containing the child away but was stopped by the mother and other members of the public. She then left the shopping centre.

The mother and the children were shaken but not otherwise hurt during the incident.

Officers from Lake Macquarie Police District were notified and commenced inquiries into the incident.

Following inquiries, police arrested a 41-year-old woman at a unit in Windale about 12.50pm yesterday (Monday 24 June 2024). During the arrest, the woman allegedly resisted police officers’ attempts to effect the arrest.

She was taken to Belmont police station where she was charged with three offences – stalk/intimidate intend fear physical etc harm (personal), affray and hinder police.

The woman was granted strict conditional bail to appear before Belmont Local Court on Wednesday 17 July 2024.

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