17 Tips to Minimise Your Business Tax

Business Tax Planning Guide

 

With the end of the financial year just around the corner, now is a good time to start implementing tax minimisation strategies in your business. We’ve listed our best 17 tips below.

Minimise Your Business Tax Tip 1:

Is your business a “Small Business” entity?

Small businesses can access a range of tax concessions from the ATO. To qualify as a “Small Business Entity”, the business must have an aggregated turnover (your annual turnover plus the annual turnover of any business connected/affiliated with you) of less than $10 million and be operating a business for all or part of the 2018 year.

Minimise Your Business Tax Tip 2:

Reduction in company tax rates for small business

The company tax rate for businesses with less than $10 million turnover is 27.5%.

If you use a Trust structure, one strategy is to allocate profits to a “Bucket Company” and cap your tax at 27.5% for the 2018 year. Note that this company must have business operations to qualify for the reduced company tax rate.

Minimise Your Business Tax Tip 3:

Instant deduction for assets less than $20,000

If your business is a Small Business Entity, the following tax concessions apply:

  • Depreciating assets valued at less than $20,000 will be immediately deductible
  • Depreciating assets valued at more than $20,000 will be depreciated in one pool at a rate of 15% in the first year and 30% in future years
  • If your pool balance at the end of the year is less than $20,000 before applying any other depreciation deduction, the entire pool balance can be written off.

You should buy these assets before 30 June 2018.

If your business is not a Small Business Entity, you will need to depreciate all assets purchased over $300. Any assets purchased for $300 or under can be immediately deducted.

Minimise Your Business Tax Tip 4:

Maximise deductible super contributions

The concessional superannuation cap for 2018 is $25,000 for all individuals. Do not go over this limit or you will pay more tax!

Note that employer super guarantee contributions are included in these caps. Where a concessional contribution is made that exceeds these limits, the excess is included in your assessable income and taxed at your marginal rate, plus an excess concessional contributions charge.

For the contribution to be counted towards the employee’s 2018 contribution cap, it must be received by the fund by 30 June 2018.

Minimise Your Business Tax Tip 5:

Tools of trade / FBT exempt items

The purchase of Tools of Trade and other FBT exempt items for business owners and employees can be an effective way to buy equipment with a tax benefit.

Items that can be packaged include handheld/portable tools of trade, computer software, notebook computers, personal electronic organisers, digital cameras, briefcases, protective clothing, and mobile phones.

If structured correctly, the employer will be entitled to a tax deduction for the reimbursement payment to the employee (for the equipment cost), claim any GST input credit, and the employee’s salary package will only be reduced by the GST-exclusive cost of the items purchased.

You should buy these items before 30 June 2018.

Minimise Your Business Tax Tip 6:

Pay employee superannuation now

To claim a tax deduction in the 2018 financial year, you need to ensure that your employee superannuation payments are received by the super fund or the Small Business Superannuation Clearing House (SBSCH) by 30 June 2018.

You should avoid making last-minute superannuation payments as processing delays may cause them to be received after year-end. If for any reasons you end up having to make last-minute payments and you would like to claim them as deductions for the current year, contact us immediately and before you make any payments for possible resolutions.

Minimise Your Business Tax Tip 7:

Defer income

If possible, defer issuing further invoices and receiving cash/debtor payments until after 30 June 2018.  This strategy pushes tax payable to future years.

Minimise Your Business Tax Tip 8:

Bring forward expenses

Purchase consumable items BEFORE 30 June 2018. These include marketing materials, consumables, stationery, printing, office and computer supplies. Spend the money now and get the deduction this year.

Minimise Your Business Tax Tip 9:

Repairs and maintenance

Make payments for repairs and maintenance (business, rental property, employment) BEFORE 30 June 2018.

Minimise Your Business Tax Tip 10:

Defer investment income and capital gains

If possible, arrange for the receipt of Investment Income (e.g. interest on Term Deposits) and the Contract Date for the sale of Capital Gains assets, to occur AFTER 30 June 2018.

Minimise Your Business Tax Tip 11:

Motor vehicle log book

Ensure that you have kept an accurate and complete Motor Vehicle Log Book for at least a 12-week period. The start date for the 12-week period must be on or before 30 June 2018. You should make a record of your odometer reading as at 30 June 2018 and keep all receipts/invoices for motor vehicle expenses.

An alternative (with no log book needed) is to simply claim up to 5,000 business kilometres (based on a reasonable estimate) using the cents per km method.

Minimise Your Business Tax Tip 12:

Investment property depreciation

If you own a rental property and haven’t already done so, arrange for the preparation of a Property Depreciation Report to allow you to claim the maximum amount of depreciation and building write-off deductions on your rental property.

Minimise Your Business Tax Tip 13:

Private company (“DIV 7A”) loans

Business owners who have borrowed funds from their company in previous years must ensure that the appropriate principal and interest repayments are made by 30 June 2018. Current year loans must be either paid back in full or have a loan agreement entered in before the due date of lodgement for the company return, or risk having it counted as an unfranked dividend in the return of the individual.

Minimise Your Business Tax Tip 14:

Year-end stocktake / Work in progress

If applicable, you need to prepare a detailed Stock Take and/or Work in Progress listing as at 30 June 2018. Review your listing and write-off any obsolete or worthless stock items.

Talk to us about your different options for valuing Stock, and how they affect your tax payable.

Minimise Your Business Tax Tip 15:

Write off bad debts

Review your Trade Debtors listing and write-off all bad debts BEFORE 30 June 2018. Prepare a management meeting document listing each bad debt, as evidence that these amounts were written off prior to year-end and enter these into your accounting system before 30 June 2018.

Minimise Your Business Tax Tip 16:

Small business concessions – prepayments

“Small Business Concession” taxpayers can make prepayments (up to 12 months) on expenses (e.g. loan interest, rent, subscriptions) BEFORE 30 June 2018 and obtain a full tax deduction in the 2018 financial year.

Minimise Your Business Tax Tip 17:

Trustee resolutions

Ensure that the Trustee Resolutions are prepared and signed BEFORE 30 June 2018 for all Discretionary (“Family”) Trusts. Please see us for more information about these resolutions.

 


Contact us today –

Now is the time to review what strategies you can use to minimise your business tax before 30 June 2018.

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This article is provided as general information only and does not consider your specific situation, objectives or needs. It does not represent accounting advice upon which any person may act. Implementation and suitability requires a detailed analysis of your specific circumstances.