TAXING TIMES: Tips for returns worth singing about
The end of the financial year is approaching quicker than the sound of music, with June 30 just a few guitar pick throws away. Don’t fret and wave your hands in the air for the wrong reasons though…
Kylie Thompson from Sorrento Strategic Accounting (WAM’s selected Member Benefit for accounting) is here to help with some advice to ease the pain and maximise the $avings.
RELAX – IT’S JUST TAX! And it doesn’t need to fry your brain…
BY KYLIE THOMPSON from SORRENTO STRATEGIC ACCOUNTING
HOW TO GET THE MAXIMUM TAX RETURN…. THE Dos
SPEND – on developing and growing your business. Here’s your excuse to spend NOW – before June 30th – buy anything that will assist with your music related business:
- Buy that desired instrument, recording gear or computer if you can afford it (you can claim up to $20,000 ex GST)
- Pay all outstanding bills before 30th June – this will reduce your taxable income!
- Pay any annual subscriptions now (especially by becoming a WAM Member) – to receive all the fabulous benefits
- Looking for inspiration? Buy what will keep you motivated and creative – CDs, vinyl, concert tix – they’re tax deductible
- Heard about a course or conference that could assist your music business? Enrol and pay now! Eg BIGSOUND
- Tour plans on the horizon? – book flights and accommodation now!
- Planning on advertising – pay now!
- Need a new rig for live performances? Stage specific clothing is tax deductible – so grab those funky threads!
ORGANISE – Find all of those receipts (the ones under your car seat and in the glove box)
- Collate your receipts – try the Receipt Bank app or scan your receipts to Dropbox, One Drive etc
- Discipline yourself to collect and store all business related receipts in ONE safe location for next year’s tax too ….
- Ensure you have a separate business bank account used exclusively for your business income and expenses
- Keep a record of your kilometres travelled for your music business (e.g. travel to rehearsals, gigs and to make business related purchases) – this will enable you to claim up to 5000km vehicle expenses
LINK UP – Get the knowledge you need by checking out these helpful links and organisations;
- Use an experienced professional music industry accountant – we know all the extra tax laws to maximise your return. WAM Members receive the first half hour of initial consultation FREE – at Sorrento Strategic Accounting . We have 25+ years’ experience representing West Australia’s finest musicians). Call or email now to book your appointment to discuss your tax needs – [email protected] / PH: 08 9246 7504. And have your WAM Membership number ready to take advantage!
- Check out what the government has to say – there are useful hints and guidelines available for establishing and maintain your business here
- Get your business name registered here!
- And get yourself an ABN here!
AND THEN THERE’S NEXT YEAR – Start the 2017/18 financial year off on the right foot – make sure you’re keeping ALL receipts for business related expenses in that safe place you’ve chosen….
- Reference materials (CDs, DVDs, concert tickets, Foxtel – it’s all research!)
- Rent and utility costs (at least part of).
- Stage specific costuming? (finally a possible excuse for that latex outfit).
- Meals and incidental costs (transport, showcase fees etc) whilst touring.
- Union fees and professional association fees (like your WAM membership!).
- Any other costs you incurred in order to earn your income unless specifically excluded.
- Accountant fees (who may also be able to save you more deductions you weren’t aware of).
HOW TO GET THE MAXIMUM TAX RETURN…. THE Don’ts
- Don’t invoice or collect any more income before June 30th
- Don’t lose receipts
- Don’t forget to collect receipts – even for the guitar you bought from your cousin
- Keep accurate records of all income and expenses