Is your business ready for hybrid working?

Is your business ready for hybrid working?

The Covid pandemic has changed the way we work and ushered in a new era of hybrid working – but is your business ready and able to offer this mix of on-site, off-site, and remote working?

When businesses were forced to close down their physical offices and workspaces, this brought technology to the fore. We’ve seen an increased use of remote working, video technologies, and cloud-based business solutions – and people have got used to this ‘working from home’ ethic.

Hybrid working aims to take the best elements of remote working and to mix these up with the undeniable advantages of working together as an in-person team. If your business is going to embrace this approach then it’s likely that employees will be spending some time in the office, some time at home and some time out and about, or at the client’s worksite – but to do this, your company is going to need to provide the right environment for a hybrid approach.

The key question, then, is whether your business is ready to embrace hybrid working.

 

Setting the foundations for hybrid working

 

Any change in work patterns requires a certain amount of innovation from your business, plus the basic requirements of being able to deliver both remote and in-person working.

To get your business ready for hybrid working, it’s crucial to set the right foundations, and this means planning ahead and keeping an open mind to the benefits of this new approach.

To prepare for a hybrid approach, your business must:

 

  • Have the necessary cloud infrastructure – if your employees are going to work from home, or while out on the road, you need your key systems to be in the cloud. Old-school applications on an office-based server are just not going to cut it for hybrid working. Cloud-based accounting, project management, CRM, and workflow tools give you the flexibility to work from any location, with one ‘point of truth’ in the cloud for all your customer information and business data.

 

  • Have clear systems and processes – when people are working in different locations, at different times, it’s important to have some consistency around how the work is done. To achieve this you need well-defined operational systems, where each task has a pre-agreed process – so the whole team knows when, how, and where to carry out their day-to-day work, record notes or raise expenses and bills, etc.

 

  • Trust your employees to self-manage – when employees are no longer based in the office five days per week, it becomes more difficult to have management oversight. With some people home-working and some out at other locations, you need to place more trust in their ability to self-manage and work to a high standard. Increasing trust and reducing micro-management is key to making a hybrid approach work for the team.

 

  • Have performance reporting in place – trusting people to work hard is a given, but you do also need to know if the business is remaining productive. Having some form of performance reporting in place is a good idea, so you can review areas like productivity, staff attendance, sales targets and revenues generated, etc.

 

  • Empower people to get their jobs done – when you can’t all be in the office for the traditional ‘stand up team meeting’ it can be hard to build team spirit and keep your employees motivated. Try having regular Zoom/Microsoft Teams huddles, where teams come together to talk through the work for the week and can raise any issues. And also think about distance or in-person social events too, so people can let their hair down and enjoy being part of your business family.

 

Preparing for hybrid working

 

The companies that fully grasp the hybrid working opportunity will be more flexible, more scalable, and ready to react to new challenges and changing environments. So, there’s real value in forging ahead with this new approach.

 

If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact our office on (03) 5366 0700 or send us an email at info@devennypayne.com.au.

Payroll Updates – Minimum Wage, Super Increase and STP Finalisation Date

Payroll Updates – Minimum Wage, Super Increase and STP Finalisation Date

 

Navigating Payroll? We can help keep you up to date on changes this year, including new rules for casuals.

 

Minimum Wage Increase – 1 July 2021

The national minimum wage increases on 1 July by 2.5% to $20.33 per hour (or $772.60 per week).

The minimum wage increase applies to employees if an award or national minimum wage defines their pay rate.

This year, the Fair Work Ombudsman (FWO) has implemented minimum wage increases to awards in a staggered approach. Most awards increase on 1 July; however, the Retail Award will increase from 1 September, and a few awards will increase on 1 November.

For full details of award increases, visit Fair Work Ombudsman Annual Wage Review 2021.

 

Changes to Casual Employment

The Fair Work Act has been amended to include a Casual Employment Information Statement (CEIS), a formal definition of casual employment, and a pathway for casual employees to become permanent employees.Employers must now provide the CEIS to all casual workers upon starting with the employer, along with the National Employment Standards and Fair Work Information Statement. Visit the FWO Casual Employment Information Statement webpage for details and to download the form for your employees. For more information about casual employment definition and the options for becoming a permanent employee, visit FWO Changes to Casual Employment to check if you have to offer permanent positions to your employees.

 

Superannuation Increase from 1 July 2021

The superannuation guarantee statutory rate increases to 10% from 1 July. Your payroll software should automatically capture the changes, but check the rate is correct when you do your first pay runs in July. Review any agreements or annualised salary arrangements you have with employees that may be inclusive of superannuation.

 

Single Touch Payroll Finalisation

The ATO recognises the impacts of COVID-19 on the Australian community. If you need additional time, you can complete your STP finalisation up until 31 July.

For an employer with a mixture of both closely held payees and arms-length employees, the due date for end-of-year STP finalisation for closely held payees is 30 September each year. All other employees are due 14 July each year.

Small employers (fewer than 19 employees) that only pay closely held payees have until the payee’s income tax return due date.

 

Review Your Payroll Systems

The start of the financial year is the best time to review your payroll setup, policies and costs. Talk to us if you need to implement payroll policies, review payroll costs or update your casual worker details. And we can help you get the STP finalisation done on time – getting it right the first time means your employees will have accurate information for their tax returns. We can also review your pay setup and make sure it’s right for the start of the new financial year.

Let’s make a time!

 

If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact our office on (03) 5366 0700 or send us an email at

info@devennypayne.com.au.

Selling property for $750K+

Selling property for $750K+

 

If you are thinking of selling a property with a market value of $750,000 or more, they must apply and be eligible for a clearance certificate.

When you sell a property and don’t have a valid clearance certificate at or before settlement, the purchaser must withhold 12.5% of the purchase price. This is the foreign resident capital gains withholding (FRCGW) amount.

Clients selling properties can apply for a clearance certificate from the ATO.

 

Affected properties include:

 

  • vacant land
  • buildings
  • residential and commercial property.

 

When to get a clearance certificate

 

Clients selling property should lodge their application for a clearance certificate as early as they can. Clearance certificates are current for 12 months and can be used for multiple sales.

Sellers must provide a certificate before settlement and it can take up to 28 days for processing.

 

When there isn’t a clearance certificate

 

Remember these things at settlement:

 

  • The purchaser must withhold 12.5% of the purchase price and remit it to the ATO (the seller will likely want to delay settlement until they have a certificate).
  • If it’s a new residential property that’s subject to GST at settlement, the purchaser must also withhold the GST amount and remit it to the ATO with Form two, GST property settlement date confirmation.
    The purchaser pays the sale price, minus any withheld amounts to the seller.
  • The two withholding obligations occur separately but operate together.

 

If the settlement date changes, you don’t need to resubmit Form one: GST property settlement withholding notification, just make sure the new settlement date is entered when lodging Form two.

 

See also:

 

 

Source: ATO – Clients selling property for $750K +

 

If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact our office on (03) 5366 0700 or send us an email at

info@devennypayne.com.au.

Happy Retirement John!

Happy Retirement John!

 

This week we sadly farewell John Payne as he commences his retirement. John, along with James Devenny, founded Devenny Payne Taxation & Business Services back in April 2007, from the original offices at 183 Main Street, Bacchus Marsh. Prior to that, John had worked in accounting and audit since 1978, including at another accounting firm in Bacchus Marsh. In the past 14 years, Devenny Payne has grown significantly to a team of over 20 staff and moved to bigger premises at 134 Main Street. John has advised and worked with many local individuals and businesses over the years and has been an active member of the community. He was a member of the founding board of management for the Bacchus Marsh Community Bank, a member of the Djerriwarrh Health Services hospital board, and also a long-term member of the Diggers Rest Football Club.

 

We thank John for helping to make Devenny Payne what it is today and wish him all the best for his retirement years. He will be greatly missed by his colleagues and clients.

Tax Tips for Property Investors

Tax Tips for Property Investors

If you have income from investment properties, now is the time to start gathering your records and reviewing your expenses for the 2021 financial year.

 

Income to Declare

 

All income earned from each property must be declared. If you have multiple properties, keep the records for each property separate to make the tax return more efficient.

  • Rent received, whether paid directly to you or through an agent or through an online management platform. Rent includes recurring regular amounts as well as any lump-sum amounts paid in advance.
  • Rental bonds returned for example if the tenant caused damage or defaulted on rent payment.
  • Insurance payouts received as compensation.
  • Expenses reimbursed by the tenant, for example, if they have caused damage and you have paid for the cost of fixing the damages, or if they have reimbursed you for water.
  • Extra fees received, for example letting or booking fees.
  • Government rebates, for example for installation of solar utilities.

 

You will need statements or recipient created tax invoices from agents or management platforms and documents for all other payments received.

 

Tax Deductions

 

Deductible expenses for the property are different for residential and commercial properties. Not all expenses related to owning a property are allowed as deductions, so it’s important to check what you can claim.

 

  • Expenses you may be able to claim this year
  • Advertising for tenants
  • Body corporate fees
  • Council rates
  • Water supply charges
  • Land tax
  • Cleaning, gardening, pest control and property maintenance
  • Insurance
  • Agent fees
  • Repairs and maintenance
  • Some legal expenses
  • Loan interest

 

Expenses you may be able to claim

 

  • Vehicle and travel expenses – use a travel diary to record details of trips taken for your employment.
  • Clothing, laundry and dry-cleaning expenses – you can claim for occupation-specific clothing, uniforms and protective gear.
  • Home office expenses – there are special rules this year for employees working from home because of COVID-19. You will need records of the hours you have worked from home to claim the ATO special rate.
  • Self-education expenses – some education expenses that relate to your current employment are claimable.
  • Tools and equipment – if you buy gear to help you in your job, this may be claimable. Small tools of the trade, protective items, professional references and laptops are some examples of equipment you may be able to claim.

 

Other Expenses

 

There are some expenses that need to be claimed over a longer period such as several years or decades. These can include borrowing expenses, capital expenditure, depreciation, initial repairs and capital works.

Some expenses cannot be claimed. These include stamp duty, loans and repayments, some legal expenses and some insurance premiums.

 

Get Help to Simplify Your Property Records

 

Tax matters for property investors can be complex. The ATO keeps a close eye on tax returns that involve property investment, as it’s easy to make mistakes. There are other matters to consider such as the period of rental availability, private use of the property, capital gains tax, legal contracts and positive or negative gearing.

We’d love to help ensure you are claiming the right deductions to make the most out of your investment property this year and beyond.

 

Book a time with us now to prepare for your tax return and we’ll make sure you make the most of all applicable tax deductions this year.

 

If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact our office on (03) 5366 0700 or send us an email at

info@devennypayne.com.au.

Tax Tips for Individuals

Tax Tips for Individuals

Although your tax return is not due for a few months yet, the end of the financial year is near. Get ahead now by preparing all the documents required for your 2021 tax return so you can get your tax done quickly and get any refund due to you in your bank!

 

Income

 

The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) automatically receives information from your employers about salary and wages that you have been paid for the financial year. You need to declare all income from other sources on your tax return as well.

  • Wages, salaries, allowances or bonuses from all employers.
  • Pensions, annuities or government payments such as JobSeeker or JobKeeper.
  • Investment income including interest earned and dividends paid.
  • Business income, if you have a business as well as a job.
  • Foreign income.
  • Crowdfunding income.
  • Sharing economy income such as Uber or Airbnb.
  • Income such as hobbies, prize money, compensation or insurance payments may be tax free but check with us.

 

Even if you have only earned a small amount from one of these sources, it still needs to be declared on the tax return. Gather all your records for anything you have earned apart from salary and wage payments from employers.

 

You will need:

  • bank statements that show interest income;
  • proof of earnings from other sources such as crowdfunding or share economy platforms;
  • records of business or hobby income;
  • records of government payments received;
  • and records of any other payments received from overseas sources, prize winnings, insurance or investments.

 

Tax Deductions

 

Have you captured all your work-related deductible expenses to make the most of your 2021 tax return?

Employees are entitled to claim work-related expenses as a tax deduction. To claim a deduction, you must have spent the money out of your own funds and not have been reimbursed by your employer. The expenses must relate to your earnings as an employee. Make sure you have invoices and receipts as proof of payment for any work-related expenses.

 

Expenses you may be able to claim

 

  • Vehicle and travel expenses – use a travel diary to record details of trips taken for your employment.
  • Clothing, laundry and dry-cleaning expenses – you can claim for occupation-specific clothing, uniforms and protective gear.
  • Home office expenses – there are special rules this year for employees working from home because of COVID-19. You will need records of the hours you have worked from home to claim the ATO special rate.
  • Self-education expenses – some education expenses that relate to your current employment are claimable.
  • Tools and equipment – if you buy gear to help you in your job, this may be claimable. Small tools of the trade, protective items, professional references and laptops are some examples of equipment you may be able to claim.

 

Occupation and Industry Specific Guidelines

 

The ATO recognises that some occupations and industries have specific requirements that employees need to pay for.

There are handy ATO fact sheets for many industries, including hairdressers, teachers, performing artists, hospitality workers, lawyers, medical professionals and more.

These guides are a great starting point if you are not sure what you can claim, but we can give you information tailored to your situation when you do your tax return with us.

 

Superannuation

 

If you have made personal superannuation contributions separate from your employer’s superannuation guarantee contributions, you may be able to claim this as a tax deduction. You will need to provide a notice of intent to claim form to your super fund and receive an acknowledgement from the fund before doing your tax return.

 

Learn more on how you can minimise your personal tax by downloading our 2021 Tax Planning Guide.

 

Book a time with us now to prepare for your tax return and we’ll make sure you make the most of all applicable tax deductions this year.

 

If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact our office on (03) 5366 0700 or send us an email at

info@devennypayne.com.au.