Single Touch Payroll is a reporting change for employers. It means employers will report payments such as salaries and wages, pay as you go (PAYG) withholding and super information to The ATO directly from their payroll solution at the same time they pay their employees. Employers may need to update their payroll solution to report through Single Touch Payroll. For employers with 20 or more employees, Single Touch Payroll reporting starts from 1 July 2018. The Australian Government … [Read more...] about Employers: Single Touch Payroll is coming
We are excited to announce the acquisition of Sydney accounting firm Pritchard Lees, effective 1 December. The move strengthens our push into the Sydney market, following on from the appointment of ex-HLB Mann Judd Director Matt Gardiner to head up the establishment of The Practice’s first office outside Melbourne. “We are thrilled to bolster our Sydney presence with this acquisition,” said Co-Founder and Director Jason Cunningham. “Establishing a Sydney footprint has been a long-standing … [Read more...] about The Practice Sydney office grows with acquisition
“The most important thing in business – indeed in life – is to understand your purpose.” So said our first business coach, who urged me and my fellow founder, Robert Hadded, to document our business ‘purpose’ for The Practice – also called a mission statement. Now for two 24-year-old upstarts in their first year in business, it would have been easy to dismiss this as fluff. But we had our eyes on a bigger prize – building a business that transcended the two founders. We wanted a business that … [Read more...] about The Power of Purpose
I've found the big differentiator between a raging business success and one that just gets by ultimately comes down to taking action. Don't get me wrong - a robust strategy is the critical first step for any successful business. It ensures you stay focused on the actions needed to achieve your objectives. But if you don't execute on that strategy, it's a waste of time. In June this year I took 30 business owners on a business retreat in Fiji. It was life-changing stuff. Business owners get so … [Read more...] about You need to be held accountable
Most business owners don’t get an adequate reward for all their hard work, heartache and stress. Over the last 20 years, I’ve seen far too many business owners who simply don’t make enough money to make it all worthwhile. (In fact, the harsh truth is that some would be better off getting a job...) But we owners can’t help ourselves. We love being the boss and calling the shots. We want to make our mark in the world and build something bigger than us. But gee, it’d be nice to make … [Read more...] about Are you better off getting a job?
I had the privilege to take 30 business owners away for a powerful, challenging and inspiring business retreat in June. It was an amazing three days full of world-class content, actionable content, and the bonding that can only happen amongst fellow passionate and switched-on business owners. The feedback from attendees was so incredible, we’ve decided to run two major events every year – Fiji in June, and Noosa in November. ‘Have your cake and sell it too’ implementation retreat | … [Read more...] about Fiji retreat: “life-changing”
This is an extract from Jason Cunningham’s latest book, Have your cake and sell it too: the 7 key ingredients of business success. We’ve all been there: standing around the barbie, listening to someone bang on about how little tax they pay. But scratch the surface and you’ll often find these people are not paying tax for one primary reason: they’re not making any money. Paying tax is not necessarily a bad thing. For one, you get that warm inner glow from contributing to society. But more … [Read more...] about 3 reasons to do tax planning this year
The Practice is thrilled to announce we are joining forces with specialist business advisory firm Knightstone. The new entity, operating under The Practice brand, will offer an even deeper range of Business Advisory consulting capabilities to support the strategic objectives of business owners, and will add increased property capabilities as part of the Personal Wealth Advisory division. “There’s a real synergy between the two entities that will only be enhanced by coming together”, said … [Read more...] about The Practice and Knightstone join forces
ATO data regarding Super Guarantee non-compliance The ATO has provided some information about Superannuation Guarantee (SG) non-compliance in its submission to a Senate inquiry into the impact of the non-payment of the Superannuation Guarantee. In addition to marketing and education activities to re-enforce the need for employers to meet their SG obligations, the ATO conducts audits and reviews to ascertain SG non-compliance, with 70% of cases stemming from employee notifications (the … [Read more...] about Tax update
You’re far too busy running your business, doing your job, or managing your household, to hunt down a better interest rate, investigate new investment opportunities or review your personal insurance to ensure you’re adequately covered... that's our job. We see our role as more than just your accountant / financial planner / mortgage broker; think of us as your personal advisers who are here to help you ensure you are financially organised. Just some of the ways we can help: Protect … [Read more...] about Want to build wealth? We’ve got you covered
As another year races by, it’s timely to recap some of the important changes at The Practice this year, and hint at some of the exciting plans we have in store for 2017: Important changes 1/ The firm has decided that we need Robert Hadded’s hands-on skills as we continue to refine our Personal Wealth Advisory offering. He will head up this division throughout 2017, bringing with him a wealth of experience in finance, structuring and asset protection, and of course tax. His leadership … [Read more...] about Big changes, exciting plans
Personal income tax cuts are law The government has finally legislated the tax cuts originally announced in the May 2016 Budget, so that the marginal tax rate of 37% now starts at $87,000. The following are the rates for adult residents for the 2016/17 income year (i.e., from 1 July 2016). Taxable income Tax on this income 0 – $18,200 Nil $18,201 – $37,000 19c for each $1 over $18,200 $37,001 – $87,000 $3,572 plus … [Read more...] about Important tax information
In my role as business adviser & accountant, I’ve had the pleasure to work with a diverse range of artists – from Vance Joy to Daniel McPherson to Dave Thornton. Generally they’re refreshingly humble and a pleasure to deal with. Like any segment of business owners, artists are all very different. Some are very financially astute, and want to be involved in important decisions; others don’t want to know about the numbers at all, and just want to focus on what they do best. As their … [Read more...] about What rock stars can teach business owners
You’re far too busy running your business, doing your job, or managing your household, to hunt down a better interest rate, investigate new investment opportunities or review your personal insurance to ensure you’re adequately covered... that's our job. We see our role as more than just your accountant / financial planner / mortgage broker; think of us as your personal advisers who are here to help you ensure you are financially organised. Just some of the ways we can help: Protect … [Read more...] about Want to build wealth? We’ve got you covered
TAX UPDATE Pre-retirees: Avoid 'too good to be true' tax schemes The ATO has launched a new project called 'Super Scheme Smart', an initiative aimed at educating individuals about the potential pitfalls of 'retirement planning schemes', to keep them safe from risking their retirement nest egg. According to the ATO, individuals most at risk are those approaching retirement, including anyone aged 50 or over, looking to put significant amounts of money into retirement, particularly SMSF … [Read more...] about Tax update
When it comes to business, cash (flow) is king. As part of your yearly tax planning activities with your accountant or business adviser, you should be kept abreast of opportunities to capitalise on government measures designed to support the small business sector. The federal government’s $20,000 instant asset write-off scheme, introduced in the 2015 Federal Budget, allows businesses to immediately deduct the full value of every asset purchased (subject to conditions) to the value of $20,000, … [Read more...] about Are you eligible for the $20,000 instant asset tax write-off?
The ATO has advised that it is continuing its Contractor payments data-matching program. It will acquire data from businesses that it visits as part of its employer obligations compliance program during the 2016/17, 2017/18 and 2018/19 financial years. The data collected from businesses is used to identify contractors that may not be meeting their taxation obligations through: not registering correctly with the ATO; non-lodgment of returns; failing to report payments received; … [Read more...] about Contractor payments data matching program
The ATO has been working on ways to deliver a simpler business activity statement (BAS) to simplify account set-up, record keeping, BAS preparation and lodgment for agents and their clients, and make it less costly. To achieve this, several GST labels will be removed from the BAS, with small businesses only required to report: GST on sales (1A); GST on purchases (1B); and Total sales (G1). They will begin user testing from 1 July 2016 and a simpler BAS should be the standard … [Read more...] about New Simpler BAS on the way
The ATO is reminding taxpayers who earn income through the sharing economy that they have tax obligations they should consider. Examples of sharing economy services include: ride-sourcing – providing taxi travel services to transport passengers for a fare; renting out a room or a whole house or unit on a short term basis; renting out parking spaces; or providing personal services, such as web or trade services, or completing odd jobs, errands, deliveries, etc. As is usual … [Read more...] about Tax implications for the sharing economy
The ATO has stated it will be paying close attention to excessive interest expense claims, and incorrect apportionment of rental income and expenses between owners. The ATO is also looking at holiday homes that are not genuinely available for rent, and incorrect claims for newly purchased rental properties. An ATO spokesperson said that their ability to identify incorrect rental property claims is becoming more sophisticated due to enhancements in technology and the extensive use of … [Read more...] about ATO focuses on rental property owners
The ATO will begin cancelling the ABNs of approximately 220,000 trusts, where there is evidence those trusts are no longer carrying on an enterprise. Trust ABNs will be cancelled from February, where information available indicates that, for the last two years, the trust has not lodged BASs and/or trust income tax returns. The ATO will send a letter if an ABN has been cancelled, including the reason for the cancellation, and a phone number to ring to get the ABN reinstated immediately if … [Read more...] about Inactive Trusts – ABNs to be cancelled
The ATO will acquire details of real property transactions for the period of 20 September 1985 to 30 June 2017 from various sources, including state revenue offices, rental bond authorities and land title offices. Data items that will be obtained include names of landlords, lease periods, amounts of rental bond, rents payable, dates of property transfers, names of transferors and transferees and valuation details. It expects to match over 30 million records with its records of 11.3 … [Read more...] about ATO data matching on rental property transactions
Parliament recently passed legislation amending the taxation law to impose withholding obligations on the purchasers of certain Australian assets – generally property purchased from a non-resident. However, the changes will affect most purchases of property in Australia. The amendments impose a 10% withholding obligation on purchasers of 'Taxable Australian Real Property' (generally, this means an interest in Australian land) from certain foreign residents, as well as certain … [Read more...] about Buyers to withhold tax for ATO when buying certain properties
The 12 Saves of Christmas … [Read more...] about The 12 ‘saves’ of Christmas
By Tim Sherlock, Senior Accountant With the Christmas break almost upon us, many employers will look to reward employees and thank clients with a gift or celebratory event… but beware of the possible Fringe Benefits Tax (FBT) and income tax implications of providing ‘entertainment’, such as Christmas parties. FBT and Entertainment Under the FBT Act, employers must choose how they calculate their FBT entertainment liability and most use either the ‘actual method’ or the ’50/50 … [Read more...] about Silly season tax traps
One of our clients, and a close friend of Jason Cunningham’s - ex Melbourne Football star David Schwarz (aka THE OX) – has a special offer for all Practice clients. The Ox is a managing director of Supatramp – a state-of-the-art indoor activity centre filled with exciting equipment and activities - and he's offering all Practice business clients a 20% discount! Supatramp has tailored a program specifically for team and relationship building, as they – like The Practice - understand the … [Read more...] about Special offer for business owners from The Ox!
On 1 December 1997, two 24 year old upstarts - Robert Hadded and Jason Cunningham - flung open the doors of The Practice for the first time. They'd gone to Primary, Secondary, High School and Uni together - so you could say they were destined to go into business together (or get restraining orders against each other). They started out with two employees - Jason and Rob - and no clients. Fast forward to today, and The Practice has over 50 dedicated team members working in harmony across … [Read more...] about The Practice turns 18
(Photo: www.pexels.com; www.gratisography.com) I wrote recently about research that showed 66% of SME owners don't believe today’s education system gives children the skills they need to run a successful small business. Backing this up is the latest MYOB SME Snapshot survey: 38% of business owners said trial and error was the No. 1 method for gaining business skills in the start-up phase – ahead of other important information sources such as accounts and financial advisers (32 per cent) … [Read more...] about 9 steps to start-up success
What makes a great workplace? The people? The pay? The jobs you work on? We can’t all be like Google and give employees time off to work on pet projects, or provide free lunch and on-site barista around the clock like LinkedIn. But the latest MYOB SME Snapshot research highlights that smart SMEs are leveraging small business attributes – namely culture and employment flexibility – as selling points to attract talent. The research showed 38% of SMEs said employment flexibility was the key … [Read more...] about Attracting the best talent
Is a healthy work/life balance really attainable for SMEs? Depends on your definition of balance. Many people think balance means an even, equal, consistent separation of work and play. And for wage earners, it’s a reasonable expectation. But not for business owners. Unfortunately, business doesn’t conform to your gym class or school pick-up schedule. There will be peaks and troughs. Late nights and stressful times. It’s up to you to reclaim your ‘life’ when things level off. Now you’re … [Read more...] about Can your accountant improve your work/life balance?
'myDeductions' online tool Tech-minded readers lamenting the lack of hoverboards can console themselves with a recently released online tool, myDeductions. It allows taxpayers to upload their receipts and information for deductions for the 2015/16 year simply by uploading a photo of a receipt. The deductions covered include work-related expenses, car expenses (it also includes a trip information calculator using Google maps) and other travel expenses, uniforms, self-education, and other … [Read more...] about Tax update
Xero’s Head of Security, Paul Macpherson, gives some tips to help all Xero users stay safe online. If at any time you have concerns about your security, contact us immediately, or email firstname.lastname@example.org. We’ve recently noticed an increase in the volume of phishing attacks and malware scams. This is an industry-wide problem for business software, online banking and other websites. Our security team has been tracking a small number of incidents—the result of phishing attacks, where a … [Read more...] about Xero users: How to stay safe online
I was alarmed to read in MYOB’s latest SME Snapshot that almost half of respondents had one credit card they use for both business and personal expenses. In my mind that’s a recipe for disaster. Too often I see business owners wondering why they can’t seem to get their cash flow flowing… only to find personal spending from the business account is to blame. The old adage the more we earn, the more we spend is central to many financial problems… this is magnified with credit cards, where you … [Read more...] about Business owners caught in the credit card trap
Your important documents may be sent to the myGov secure website The ATO has a stated aim of reducing paper and instead sending refunds and activity statements electronically. This will be done securely via the myGov federal government website, where your documents will be stored and can be retrieved at any time. What is myGov? myGov is a fast, simple way to access government services online. A secure myGov account lets you link a range of Australian Government services with one … [Read more...] about ATO going paperless – how you may be affected
When I was at school, I was taught a lot about trigonometry, geography, Australian history, physics, chemistry… and not a single thing about managing money – let alone running a business. When asked in MYOB’s latest monthly SME Snapshot if today’s education system gave children the skills they need to run their own business, 66% of respondents disagreed (some strongly). Like most small business owners, my business lessons were learned at the school of life. On the job. The hard way. In … [Read more...] about 7 essential skills for small business owners
Remember the good old days? I started reminiscing about how far we’ve come as a profession after reading a blog on how artificial intelligence is changing the future of business. Ah… the good old days: When clients would only use their accountant as a bean-counter – begrudgingly engaging us to prepare documents only because they were required by law? (Not an ideal relationship) When clients would send you zipped up dat files (that you’d receive two days later by snail mail) just so you … [Read more...] about The changing role of accountants… for the better
It’s finals time! And as the pressure builds, so do the clichés – talk of ‘structures’, ‘KPIs’, ‘following the process’, ‘our brand of football’, and the perennial favourite, ‘taking it one week at a time.’ Elite sporting organisations have borrowed heavily from business over the last decade, bringing in numerous business ideas and terminologies to drive performance in the pursuit of excellence. But there are just as many powerful insights business owners can learn from elite sport. And I … [Read more...] about 11 things SMEs can learn from sport
It’s a brave new world. Accounting has been transformed by numerous significant technological and operational changes that have forever altered our relationships with clients – changes which provide significant opportunities for our clients to grow and prosper. But change can be challenging. Confronting. Frightening. Especially for traditionally conservative accountants. But with change comes opportunity. If you can embrace it, you can transform your relationship with clients – and … [Read more...] about What does the future hold for today’s Accountant?
Australia’s SME revenue performance has hit heights not seen since September 2011, and revenue decline is on the, um, decline. And no, it’s not simply a Turnbull bounce. The strongest SME revenue performance of the last four years, and five year low in the proportion of businesses experiencing revenue decline, was captured in the March 2015 MYOB Business Monitor. But if the Canning by-election is any guide, this confidence will only be bolstered by Malcolm Turnbull’s rise to PM. In his … [Read more...] about Is high SME confidence just a ‘Turnbull bounce’?
After leadership rumblings that seemed to last longer than his just-shy-of-two-year term as PM, Tony Abbott has exited stage left. Whatever your take on the Abbott Government’s achievements, what seems clear from the sidelines is 1) if Tony had a clear vision for the country, he failed to let us in on it, and 2) his PM-ship seemed destabilised to the point of being terminal. Our 29th PM, Malcolm Turnbull, cited Abbott’s inability to provide ‘economic leadership’ and ‘the economic confidence … [Read more...] about What SMEs want from PM Malcolm
When the going gets tough, Aussie SMEs turn to their accountants first. That’s one of the findings of the most recent MYOB SME Snapshot survey. Not that this is surprising. I’ve seen first-hand how technology changes such as the rise of cloud accounting have helped businesses reduce administration tasks and increase cash flow. The flow-on effect, and the most profound impact of cloud accounting, has been to free up Accountants from a compliance focus so they can move from bean-counter to … [Read more...] about Accountants do it better
I gave up long ago on the dream of a totally paperless office. The predictions weren’t worth the paper they were printed, scanned, filed and archived offsite on. It’s simply a bridge too far for service industries like accounting and legal. Well, we’re one step closer. The relentless march of technology has struck another blow in the endless paper war. I’ve used electronic signatures for a while now – mostly for keynote presentation agreements – and they tick all the boxes: safe, … [Read more...] about New tools to fight the paper war
Recently, the banks have raised interest rates for investor lending by as much as 29bps (.29%) – more than a standard Reserve Bank Increase. Why? Because recent moves by APRA are forcing banks to reduce the growth rate of their Investment Lending and the size of Investment Lending portfolio’s compared to Owner Occupied lending. This is an effort to slow down property price growth driven by this sector. Rather than stopping or tightening credit policy, the big 4 banks have instead opted to … [Read more...] about Bank lending practices are changing – how it affects you, and how to protect yourself
All businesses are fundamentally the same. If I've learned one thing from my 18 years in business working with hundreds of SME clients (and growing my own little business), it's that we owners all have the same challenges: Attracting and retaining the right team members who are great at what they do Attracting and retaining your ideal customers – people who pay on time, take your advice, and are a joy to work with Getting employees to consistently do the right things, at the right … [Read more...] about Is your business funding the lifestyle you want… or is your lifestyle supporting your business?
Why penalise someone for working hard? For me, that’s what the current debate around increasing the GST boils down to. My belief is simple: it’s far more effective, on a number of levels, to tax spending rather than taxing earning. The benefit of consumption taxes like the GST is the amount of tax you pay depends on how much you spend. This alone would be unfair on lower income households, as the percentage of tax they would pay compared to income would be higher. So any talk of a GST … [Read more...] about Should Australia get a second job?
BUSINESS IS TOUGH - GET FIGHTING FIT at Jason Cunningham's Business Bootcamp It takes one to grow one. Tap into Jason Cunningham's business-building expertise and learn his fundamentals for business success in this intensive 1-day workshop. Tired of treading water with your business? Know you need to make changes, but don't know where to start? Identify the key activities you should focus on for maximum effectiveness, and start building a 12 month action plan. You know … [Read more...] about Business Bootcamp – Wed 26 August
Think back to those heady, exciting days when you first decided to take the plunge and seize control of your own destiny. What were the reasons you gave friends who were sceptical (or thought you were downright crazy)? “A better quality of life - more freedom and flexibility.” “To create something special, and make a difference.” “To be the boss and call the shots.” “To get a greater share of the profits for all my efforts.” So… how’s that working out for … [Read more...] about Why did you go into business?
For 2014/15 individual income tax returns to be lodged this year, the ATO says it will be focusing on: unusually high work-related expense claims across all industries and occupations; expenses claimed that have already been reimbursed by employers; and claims for private expenses such as travel from home to work. The ATO’s ability to identify and investigate claims that differ from the ‘norm’ is improving each year at a rapid rate. Every return is scrutinised and it is … [Read more...] about ATO warns over-claiming is easier to detect than ever
Although all large and medium-sized employers were meant to be ready for SuperStream by 30 June this year, the ATO has advised that, for those who are not yet ready, it will extend that date by four months until 31 October 2015. SuperStream for small employers with 19 or fewer employers started from 1 July 2015. … [Read more...] about Employers – ATO extends SuperStream deadline
A recent risk review conducted by the ATO showed that up to 70% of employers that have Fringe Benefits Tax (FBT) obligations are non-compliant. This could leave businesses exposed to hefty fines and penalties. Read on to find out if you’re at risk… Fringe Benefits are benefits given to an employee by an employer in addition to their salary. The most common Fringe Benefits comes in the form of company cars given to employees to use which is garaged at or near the Employee’s place of residence … [Read more...] about What the FBT?!?!
Everyone’s looking to save a few extra bucks. Here are four ways you can reduce your taxable income (if you earn a salary) through Salary Packaging – and thus save yourself some cash. Novated Leasing. If you’re looking to buy a new car, consider Novated Leasing. This is an arrangement whereby your employer agrees to make the Lease payments on the Motor Vehicle and you make a Pre & Post Tax Contribution from your Salary to cover the costs of the Lease payments. Clear as mud? Suffice to … [Read more...] about Four ways to save cash through salary packaging
From fridges to moisturiser, there are hundreds of surprising items that are tax deductible. Depending on your industry, here’s what you could claim. With the Federal Government’s recent renewed focus on supporting small business through tax relief in the Budget [link to Budget article], we take a look at some of the lesser-known existing exemptions that many business owners aren’t claiming. So strap in as we enter the weird, wacky and wonderful world of business tax exemptions. Note that … [Read more...] about Weird And Wonderful Business Tax Deductions You Probably Didn’t Know About
The pundits are divided about how much you need to retire on comfortably. One expert will say $1 million is enough, while others say you’ll need a fair bit more, particularly as the make-up of (and accessibility to) the aged pension is likely to change in the future. And crucially, which side of the fence you sit will depend greatly on your definition of ‘comfortably’. Many experts point to a retirement shortfall based on the longevity risk of outliving your super. There are varying … [Read more...] about Don’t be in denial about your retirement – fund the shortfall yourself
The ATO will have an increased focus on rental property deductions this Tax Time. It will be paying closer attention to excessive deductions claimed for holiday homes in 2015, and will also be actively educating rental property owners about what they can and cannot claim. For example, the ATO will be writing to rental property owners in popular holiday locations, reminding them to only claim the deductions they are entitled to, for the periods the property is rented out or is genuinely … [Read more...] about ATO increases focus on rental property deductions
The ATO is again warning the public to be aware of a phone scam that is circulating, where fraudsters are intimidating people into paying a fake tax debt over the phone. The aggressive scam attempts to force people to pay a fake tax debt immediately by threatening arrest if they don’t comply. If you receive a call from the ATO we recommend you ask for the caller’s name and either call our office with the details or phone them back through the ATO’s switchboard on 13 28 69. … [Read more...] about ATO warns about aggressive phone scams
There are keys to success that every single business – whether a start-up or a thriving enterprise – needs to master. If you can set your business up with these in mind, you’re half way to building a brilliant business, argues Jason Cunningham. Know your business. The first thing I encourage all small business owners to do is to articulate your ‘why’ – the reason your business exists (and the real reason customers buy off you). Crucially, you need to communicate it to your key stakeholders: … [Read more...] about ‘Start me up’ – 8 keys to start-up success
Cash flow is the lifeblood of any business. The highest profile measures in the recent Federal Budget focus on providing cash flow relief while stimulating consumption. But there are other ways that small businesses can take advantage of the budget, such as the ability to ensure you have the correct structure in place. 1. CASH FLOW MEASURES There are some key budget measures that aim to increase cash flow for small businesses. Importantly, to maximise these opportunities, you should … [Read more...] about How business owners can take advantage of the Federal Budget
Click on the link to access our free Cash Flow Calculator … [Read more...] about Cash Flow Calculator
We’ve all been there. Standing around the barbie, listening to someone bang on about how little tax they pay. But when you scratch the surface, you often find out the reason they’re not paying tax isn’t due to clever fiscal management… it’s because they’re not making any money. Paying tax is not necessarily a bad thing. For one, you get that warm inner glow from contributing to society. But more importantly, it means you’re making money. Now let me be clear – as the late great Kerry … [Read more...] about EOFY Planning – Why spending money to save on tax doesn’t make sense
Most pundits expect the RBA to cut the cash rate again this year. Some even predict the cash rate will fall to 1.5%. This gets mortgage holders and property investors excited. The question is… why? Obviously new investors can get a great deal, but I challenge people to look at the rate decision differently. What’s the actual impact for existing mortgage holders? Do you automatically get this new rate cut (and the previous cuts) passed on to you in the form of a reduced mortgage … [Read more...] about RBA to drop cash rate again… SO WHAT? How does it actually impact YOU?
Some of the areas that the ATO has stated it will be focusing on are: Work-related expenses: motor vehicle expenses for travelling between home and work; overnight travel; and the work-related proportion of use for computers, phones and other electronic devices. Rental property expenses: excessive deductions being claimed for holiday homes (deductions should be limited to the amount of income earned, or to the number of days actually rented out at a commercial … [Read more...] about Are you an ATO audit target?
The ATO has identified employers in the following industries as having a higher risk of not meeting their super obligations: child care services; building and industrial cleaning; and pubs, bars and taverns. The ATO is currently running an education campaign for business owners in these industries to help them better understand their super obligations. It will be undertaking audits from July 2015 of employers who continue to not meet super obligations for their employees. The … [Read more...] about ATO super crackdown – child care, building, cleaning, pubs
There have been some well-documented, high profile cases of the financial planning arms of Big 4 Banks (eg NAB and CBA) undertaking highly inappropriate behaviour, resulting in sackings and compensation being paid to hundreds of clients who received poor advice. While I believe the industry definitely needs a shake-up, we can’t tar all advisers with the same brush. Here are a couple of financial planning myths that I’d like to address. MYTH: All financial planners are crooks trying to … [Read more...] about Busting myths about financial planners
Are you an ATO audit target? The ATO has announced it's audit 'hit list' for this financial year: Work-related expenses: motor vehicle expenses for travelling between home and work; overnight travel; and the work-related proportion of use for computers, phones and other electronic devices Rental property expenses: excessive deductions being claimed for holiday homes (deductions should be limited to the amount of income earned, or to the number of days actually rented … [Read more...] about ATO on the warpath
There’s been growing consternation among many retailers and hospitality business owners over the decision to designate Easter Sunday and Grand Final eve Friday as Public Holidays. Many shops, restaurants and bars hit customers with a surcharge of up to 15% on Easter weekend to cover the additional wage costs. Worse still, some closed their doors completely as they felt the additional penalty rates wouldn’t make it financially viable. So, not only did some customers cop higher prices to pay … [Read more...] about Penalty rates – who really gets penalised?
“A goal is a dream with a deadline.” - Napoleon Hill, author of 'Think and grow rich' Didn’t achieve the financial outcome that you wanted in 2014? As another year already begins to race by, maybe it’s time you made the changes you know you really should be making in order to maximise your financial position. I’m not talking about new year’s resolutions, which are just wishes that rarely come true. To achieve the changes you want, you need a strategy. While this really requires the help … [Read more...] about New year, new financial you
Research published in The Age recently shows a frightening retirement picture for many Australians, and highlights a disconnect between the lifestyle people expect to enjoy in retirement and the lifestyle they will actually be able to afford. A recent global survey of people's attitudes to retirement savings shows that while Australians expect to spend 23 years in retirement, their money will run out after only just 10 years, leaving them to rely on the age pension to survive. The funding … [Read more...] about Are you in denial about your retirement?
There was an increase in the number of businesses for sale in Australia in 2014, hitting an all-time high of 41,200 enterprises up for grabs in October last year. But in an overcrowded market, how do you get the best price for your business? And more importantly, how do you make a play for the big bucks? The Practice’s Jason Cunningham is featured in this SmartCompany article on How to sell your small business for big … [Read more...] about How to sell your small business for big bucks
The winners of the inaugural Australian Accounting Awards have been announced – and we’re thrilled to announce The Practice’s CEO and founding partner, Robert Hadded, was named ‘Executive of the Year 2014’. It is a significant achievement, as Robert beat an array of high-calibre executives from top tier firms nationally. The team at The Practice congratulate Robert on this fitting testament to his exceptional performance as CEO of The Practice. … [Read more...] about Robert Hadded named ‘Executive of the Year 2014’
A recent case before the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) involved a company that had withheld nearly $850,000 in pay as you go (PAYG) withholding that it had deducted from its employees' salaries and wages. It was obviously in some financial trouble, and failed to remit any of the monies to the ATO before being wound up. Company directors have a legal responsibility to ensure that their company meets its PAYG withholding and superannuation guarantee (SG) obligations. This doesn't … [Read more...] about Directors liable for company’s PAYG withholding
With the Christmas break almost upon us, many employers and businesses will be planning to reward employees with a celebratory party or event. However, you should be aware of the possible Fringe Benefits Tax and income tax implications of providing 'entertainment' (including Christmas parties) to employees and clients. FBT and Entertainment Under the FBT Act, employers must choose how they calculate their FBT entertainment liability and most use either the 'actual method' or the '50/50 … [Read more...] about Tax treatment of employee / client parties and gifts
Negotiations have been in the sports pages a lot of late. ASADA is negotiating with players and clubs; the AFL is about to negotiate the next broadcast rights deal; and an ex-Geelong player is about to sue his former club over an injury. So I thought it was an opportune time to look at my tips for effective negotiation. First, there are two types of negotiations: where you want to retain the relationship where it’s a one-off, so you’re only interested in the best outcome for … [Read more...] about 4 tips for successful negotiating
[youtube height="HEIGHT" width="WIDTH"]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j8DMAbuvF4U[/youtube] … [Read more...] about Webinar: Create (and protect) your ideal lifestyle
The Ox and Mark Allen gave me a fair bit of ribbing (and rightly so) about a photo that recently surfaced of me in overalls as part of a ‘Men of all seasons’ calendar I did 20 years ago to help support Pascoe Vale Football Club where I played, and now help out the committee. The things we do to support our local sports clubs. All jokes aside, it highlights the lengths clubs have to go these days to keep up with the arms race that is attracting players to your club. This issue has … [Read more...] about Keeping local sports clubs afloat
Machu Pichu. Swimming with sharks. Nude skydiving. (I just made that last one up.) What's on your bucket list? A recent survey by REST Industry Super Fund of their members found that 1/3rd believed they wouldn't have the cash to fulfil their bucket list when they stop working (and finally have the time to tackle the list). Is it because of our massive mortgages? Are the things we want to do too extravagant? Maybe. But the fact remains we could all benefit by tipping a … [Read more...] about Will you have enough cash for your bucket list?
Coles have announced they're moving into... finance. Coles and Woolworths already have a market share of 72.5 per cent of the $82 billion grocery sector. In addition to their food and liquor retail empire, they now offer petrol, insurance, an increasing amount of pharmaceutical products, and credit cards to name a few. Coles has announced a joint venture with GE Money to offer small personal loans. GE, being a clever company, have identified this JV is a great way to offer their products … [Read more...] about Are Coles and Woolies taking over our lives?
An article in the Sydney Morning Herald recently caught my eye about a man suing the ATO for ruining his life. Bold move, I thought - assuming he probably contributed to the issue by not regularly lodging a return. But as I read on, I grew to really feel for the guy. In 2006 the ATO incorrectly issued Gary Kurzer a bill for $200,000 (the bill was later corrected to $8,554). It took 5 years of legal battles before the ATO finally acknowledged their mistake. In that time, he … [Read more...] about Sticking it to the man!
A revenue strategy is important, but it’s only one piece of the puzzle. If you don’t have a solid foundation for your business – understanding your People, your Processes, and your Customers – you might strike trouble regardless of your revenue. You can be the best salesperson in the world, and have healthy revenue… but if you don’t have your back end house in order, or you’re selling the wrong thing to the wrong people at the wrong time, your sales may take a hit – and your profit is … [Read more...] about Why you should focus on financials last
Superannuation Guarantee is now 9.5% - ensure your software is up-to-date (talk to us if you're unsure of your obligations) Issue PAYG W payment summaries to your employers AND send/transmit to the ATO If your Wages and Super is over $550,000 - ensure you attend to your annual Payroll tax obligations Review and complete your annual WorkCover certificate of wages (do you need to review your forward estimates?) … [Read more...] about REMINDER: Annual employer obligations you must attend to
With the Government determined to balance the budget, the ATO is reviewing the $17.7b uncollected taxes over 2012/13 (60% owed by small businesses). Talk to us to discuss strategies to ensure you have the cash flow available to meet your tax obligations. The Inspector General of Taxation (IGT) has announced a review of the ATO's approach to debt collection. The ATO has stated that more recent increases are a result of economic conditions and its assistance to viable businesses to … [Read more...] about ATO to get tough on outstanding $18b unpaid tax
As reported in The Age yesterday, several factors have presented consumers with never-before-seen rate opportunities. It's a great time to get finance - or get a better deal on existing finance. Contact us for a FREE review of your current loans to ensure you're taking full advantage of record low rates. And if you're considering a new loan, let us do the work for you - and use our relationships to give you access to broker-only rates and special deals. 4.63% for loans … [Read more...] about BREAKING NEWS: Special bank interest rates (limited time)
Buying a property has always been the Great Aussie Dream… so it’s a no-brainer that everyone should buy rather than rent. Right? Surprisingly, not according to many pundits. Some argue we’re paying too much for property – that affordability has gone out the renovated sunroom window. Others go further, suggesting we might be in a property bubble and that these high prices will eventually burst. Even the Reserve Bank has weighed into the debate, with a recent RBA study suggesting … [Read more...] about To rent or buy… that is the question
Your business financials are important… but I argue they should be the last things you focus on. I encourage all small businesses to take the Balanced Scorecard approach, focusing on the 4 pillars of every business: your People, your Processes, your Customers, and your Financials. This sounds controversial coming from an accountant... but business owners should first focus on the other 3 pillars of business: your People, your Processes, and your Customers. These three pillars drive the … [Read more...] about The first (and most important) thing small business owners should focus on
I read with interest (get it) a recent article in the Herald Sun, Superannuation funds climb by double digits in the 2013-14 financial year. While the median return on a balanced fund is estimated at about 13% for the 2013-14 financial year, some top funds should see returns of up to 16%. Coupled with a 15.6% return the previous year, it's an outstanding return in anyone’s language. Two years of double digit returns for super funds is great news for pretty much all working Australians, as we … [Read more...] about Good news you may have missed – two years of double-digit super returns
At my recent 'Secrets of business success' event, I challenged the audience with two simple questions: 1) Why did you go into business? (Usual - and perfectly valid - answers: more money, better/more flexible lifestyle, run my own show, answer to no one, make a difference, etc...) 2) So... how's that working out for you? (...awkward silence) This is a common issue facing business owners - one I've seen all too often in my 17 years of helping business owners grow their business … [Read more...] about Why did you go into business… and how’s that working out for you?
Strategy Bootcamp - Thursday 14 August Join Jason Cunningham and The Practice's Business Advisory team from for a powerful day of strategic planning Write your own strategic plan in a day (for a fraction of the cost) Walk away with a 12 month action plan to achieve your strategic goals Work with other growth-oriented business owners to overcome your key challenges and get inspired to transform your … [Read more...] about Build your own strategic plan in a day
By Jason Cunningham - Director of The Practice Happy New Financial Year! We Accountants get very excited at this time of year. (It doesn’t take much.) But so should you, as it's a great opportunity to set yourself up financially. Just as we set personal goals when entering a new year, the end of financial year is the perfect time to revisit your money goals, see if you’re on track, and make new money resolutions to work towards. Setting New Financial Year resolutions is one thing… … [Read more...] about Tips for a prosperous New (Financial) Year
Thanks for requesting my eBook - you can download it here: Grow your business and profit with less stress. All the best on your business-building journey. Jason Cunningham … [Read more...] about eBook: Grow your business (and profits) with less stress
Can you smell it? Yep, fear. As 30 June approaches, people start thinking about the dreaded 'T' word. Well, help is at hand. Below are a few tools that will not only help you maximise your deduction, they also provide some great tips to simplify and streamline your affairs: Get smart and save at 30 June: some things that all business owners and individuals should consider before and immediately after 30 June. Some will help streamline your affairs and make things more efficient, and … [Read more...] about Cool tools to help you at Tax Time
Robert Hadded discusses the importance of correctly structuring your affairs, particularly for business owners and investors. [youtube height="HEIGHT" width="WIDTH"]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wpjnq4f78J0[/youtube] … [Read more...] about Why asset protection is vital for investors and business owners
Businesses: plan now for tax time Planning for your tax now enables you to make changes before the end of the financial year – changes which could significantly reduce the size of your tax liability. We encourage all businesses to conduct a tax planning session before 30 March to ensure you have time to take action and improve your tax position. Benefits of tax planning before 30 June: Make changes now so you can potentially pay less tax (only pay what you are legally … [Read more...] about Plan now, minimise business tax later
Budget 2013/14 - what does it mean for you? Key points from the Budget - with commentary provided by CPA Australia Education, the knowledge economy and the Asian Century $9.8 billion from 2014-15 will be welcome news for our schools and school teachers but Asian literacy barely rates anything but a cursory mention in this Budget. The $97 million earmarked for additional university places for nursing, teaching and Asian languages represents only around 1,650 places per … [Read more...] about Federal Budget – what it means for you
Video of Jason Cunningham sharing what Kerry told Mark... and what you can learn for your business. [youtube height="HEIGHT" width="WIDTH"]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H0bGhSZG_x4[/youtube] … [Read more...] about VIDEO: What Kerry Packer told Mark Bouris…
Part 2: Selling your property by tender How a Sale by Tender works A tender is essentially a type of closed silent auction. When selling a home by tender, the seller will accept tenders from prospective buyers, and then consider these various offers at a pre-specified date. The offers are presented in sealed envelopes, which are kept secret from other buyers. This means that prospective buyers will remain unaware of what prices competitors are submitting. Before this process begins, the home … [Read more...] about Different methods of selling real estate
Last week, the Government announced a range of proposed changes to the superannuation laws. The aim of the changes is to create what they believe will be a more equitable and sustainable retirement income system. The following is a summary of the announced changes to superannuation: 1. Changes to the tax exemption for earnings on superannuation assets supporting income streams From 1 July 2014, earnings on assets supporting income streams above $100,000 per year will be taxed at a rate of … [Read more...] about Proposed changes to superannuation
Retirement means different things to different people, but when I refer to "retirement" I mean not needing (or wanting) to work for money anymore - to be able to afford to stop working and use built up investments & superannuation to fund your lifestyle. When thinking about our golden years, how much is enough to retire comfortably on? The answer will be different for everyone because it depends on several variables: 1) Timeframe/Longevity The earlier someone "retires" and the longer they … [Read more...] about How much is REALLY enough to retire comfortably on?
Wealth Protection, Asset Protection & Estate Planning aren't the most thrilling of topics. Most people would rather stab their own eyeball than think about it. But imagine you did stab your eyeball, and were off work for 6 months... how would your family cope? Forgive me for being cheeky, but I'm passionate about ensuring people are protected against things that will 'never happen to them'... but they happen to someone. Consider a few personal examples: My best friend passed away … [Read more...] about What happens to your family if something happens to you…?
Here's an insider's view of the key considerations when listing a property on the market, from the newest member of our Finance team, Ian Smith: Having previously been a real estate agent in Melbourne's eastern suburbs, and most recently run my own finance broking business for the past 2 years, I've learned a lot of things that can make a huge difference when listing your property for sale. I hope this helps you next time you're selling a property. Property Listing 1. When listing with an … [Read more...] about Top tips when listing a property with an agent
In this excerpt from our recent education seminar, Unlock your super to invest in property, head of The Practice Wealth Management teamMatt Morrison highlights the benefits and pitfalls of using a self-managed super fund (SMSF) to invest in property. [youtube height="HEIGHT" width="WIDTH"]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OS8-jcm_Pok[/youtube] Keep an eye out for other education seminars and webinars (free for Practice clients), or email email@example.com to arrange a free … [Read more...] about Benefits of investing in property using your super
Jason Cunningham outlines the 4 steps to creating wealth as detailed in his financial self-help book 'Where's My Money?' [youtube height="HEIGHT" width="WIDTH"]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ja6EVMNKRpE[/youtube] For more simple mone tips, follow Jason on Twitter: @jasecunningham. … [Read more...] about 4 steps to creating wealth
When selling your property, there are three main real estate selling strategies that your real estate agent will recommend. The following factors will come into consideration when choosing which method is best for you: The kind of property that you own Where the property is located The Real Estate Agent that you choose The current real estate market conditions in your area The timeframe in which you wish to sell your property Your personal beliefs Collectively, these factors … [Read more...] about Different methods of selling real estate
NEW-home builders are set to save thousands with the State Government boosting grants and fast-tracking stamp duty cuts. But buyers looking to purchase an existing property need to act before 30 June 2013 or miss out. First Home Buyer Grant From 1 July 2013, the First Home Owner Grant (FHOG) will increase from $7000 to $10,000 for newly constructed homes under $750,000. The increase in the FHOG will apply for first-home buyers who enter into a contract to purchase or build a new home on or … [Read more...] about New-home grants upped to $10,000; stamp duty savings fast-tracked
Matt Morrison outlines the key steps to creating the life you want once you finish working. (It's easier than you think...)[youtube height="HEIGHT" width="WIDTH"]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6a8kLBL0gGQ[/youtube] … [Read more...] about Plan for life after work
Take action today, so you can enjoy the life you've always dreamed about when you choose to stop working. … [Read more...] about Go retire MENTAL!
Matt Morrison outlines why budgets are the key to a successful wealth creation plan. [youtube height="HEIGHT" width="WIDTH"]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eMtHDk6Mk-A[/youtube] … [Read more...] about Budgets are sexy…?
There are several super issues to be aware of from an accounting perspective... especially now that the ATO are watching super more closely. Who do you have to pay super for? A lot of businesses get this question wrong. It's not just employees you have to pay super for - if you hire certain contractors who work solely for you, you're required by law to withhold super and pay work cover for those individuals. How much super do I have to pay? Right now, the answer's simple - 9% - … [Read more...] about Super changes that every business owner (and some individuals) should know
How you could save yourself thousands... There’s a dirty four-letter word keeping many Australians awake at night: DEBT. Before they know it, many clients we see have racked up property loans, personal loans, car loans and credit cards... it can quickly become too daunting to deal with. Rather than ignore it (no, it won’t go away), take heart: by consolidating your debt you can save yourself thousands, and free yourself from debt. We specialise in debt consolidations, and have helped … [Read more...] about Drowning in debt?
[youtube height="HEIGHT" width="WIDTH"]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wpjnq4f78J0[/youtube] … [Read more...] about Why asset protection is vital for investors and business owners
[youtube height="HEIGHT" width="WIDTH"]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=95CI8FpcO80[/youtube] … [Read more...] about Where’s My Money?
In this excerpt from our recent education seminar, Unlock your super to invest in property, head of The Practice Wealth Management team Matt Morrison highlights the benefits and pitfalls of using a self-managed super fund (SMSF) to invest in property. [youtube height="HEIGHT" width="WIDTH"]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OS8-jcm_Pok[/youtube] … [Read more...] about Video: Benefits of investing in property using your super
Up to $20,000 business improvement funding available Free business review Improve the productivity and competitiveness of your business Take your business to the next level The Federal government has introduced a range of initiatives to help SME’s improve their productivity and competitiveness by providing access to professional business advisory and development services. Enterprise Connect is an initiative designed to help businesses improve by providing a detailed review of the … [Read more...] about Are you eligible for $20,000 of funding to improve your business?
The new guy is starting tomorrow and you’re trying to figure out if he’s an employee or contractor. What’s the difference… and does it REALLY matter which one he is? Why you need to get it right Determining if someone is an employee or contractor has several implications for your business meaning that getting the decision right is important. It affects a number of your obligations including superannuation, work cover, payroll tax and the type of tax to be withheld. Therefore if you have not … [Read more...] about Are they an employee or contractor?
Without a secure income stream, even the best laid financial plans can come undone You’ve probably heard the mantra ‘cash flow is the lifeblood of any business’. … [Read more...] about When building wealth, it’s all about cash flow
With the Fringe Benefits Tax (FBT) year just about to end, it's important to beware the possible effect on you - so here's the what, how, who and when of the FBT. What is FBT? The Fringe Benefits Tax (FBT) is a tax paid on certain benefits that employers provide to their employees or their employee’s associates in place of salary or wages. Payments by 3rd parties to your associates under an arrangement by the employer are also included. What are 'benefits'? According to the ATO, a … [Read more...] about Fringe Benefits Tax: what it is, how it works and who it affects