Home' Scoop : Scoop 52 Winter 2010 Contents Property Investors...
Cut your Tax!
Deppro GUARANTEES to cut any tax bill by twice our fee
in the first full year of entitlements
or provide the report together with a full refund
Don't be ripped off at tax time
A couple of good questions and a simple online
search can save property investors from being
ripped off by unqualified "experts" in the lead
up to tax time -- that's the warning from one
Australia's leading specialists in tax depreciation,
"Tax time is approaching and it's natural for
landlords to want to squeeze every cent they can
out of their investments by making sure they claim
as many property deductions as possible," he said.
"Unfortunately, there are some so-called 'experts'
out there who want to take advantage of this
desire to maximise your returns -- either by
inflating what you can legally claim, or misleading
clients as to their qualifications to do the job.
"In relation to preparing depreciation reports, one of
the easiest ways to sift out the riff-raff is to ask the
company whether the company's managing partner
is an associate member of the Australian Institute of
Quantity Surveyors (AIQS) and then to do a search
of the Institutes website, www.aiqs.com.au, to
ensure they are being upfront.
Mr Bennion is the managing director of DEPPRO
Asia Pacific -- Australia's leading specialist in tax
depreciation allowances for investment properties.
He is a member of the AIQS, the chairman of Qld
Membership for the AIQS and holds a Bachelor of
Applied Science degree in Quantity Surveying.
"The AIQS is the governing institute for quantity
surveyors, construction economists and cost
managers -- which include people who monitor
building costs, as well as those who specialise in
post-construction work such as tax depreciation
schedules," he said.
"There are many different levels of AIQS
membership because it fosters development in
the industry and acknowledges the progress of
training through other levels of membership
including Student, Probationers and Affiliates.
These levels do not however require the same level
of expertise as an associate member," Mr Bennion.
"Non-members or even people with junior levels of
membership could be unqualified, inexperienced
or lack professional indemnity insurance, and are
not subject to any code of professional conduct,
so why take the risk? If you are going to pay a
professional, make sure you get a professional."
Mr Bennion said the industry estimated that a
staggering 80% of property investors overpaid
their income tax.
"We encourage people entering the investment
market to seek professional advice before lodging
their tax returns to make sure they are maximising
their deductions. But while you want to claim
as much as possible, it's still essential that your
depreciation report -- and the claims you make --
meet strict Australian Tax Office guidelines.
"If someone is making promises that really do
sound too good to be true, chances are that's
exactly what they are. And the relationship you
have with your tax depreciation adviser is the
same as you have with an accountant -- you sign
it's you that winds up in trouble if something is
wrong or illegal, not your adviser."
There are a number of companies currently
being investigated by the Australian Competition
and Consumer Commission for such things as
non-members using the AIQS logo on marketing
material and websites, companies guaranteeing
much higher claims than other companies,
companies overstating their size and number of
staff, and companies passing off by advertising
using the heading of another company for
credibility and then linking to their own website.
Mr Bennion said people who used the internet to
search for a depreciation adviser should also be
very careful where they "clicked".
"There have been cases of tax depreciation
companies using misleading weblinks. A little
extra research -- and an AIQS membership check
-- is worth the time."
DEPPRO is Australia's leading specialist in tax
depreciation with offices in Melbourne, Brisbane,
Sydney, Cairns, Adelaide and Perth.
As managing director of DEPPRO, Mr Bennion
supervises thousands of professional tax
depreciation reports each year.
Call 1300 888 489 or visit www.depro.com.au
As the accounting industry's preferred supplier of tax depreciation schedules, we do not fee share or outsource our work. We service
accountants Australia wide, and with written acceptance from the ATO, Deppro is the only choice for your tax depreciation needs.
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