Rental properties are still considered a good investment for many people – despite a lot of recent negative flack. If you have investment properties, now is a good time to look at your portfolio and be clear about the costs and income associated with them, make sure you’re meeting all the compliance requirements to avoid any penalties, and ensure you’re getting tailored advice from your accountant.

Property investing

As accountants, the first thing we’ll tell you is to find out what the costs of your properties would be in the coming years. Unless you’ve been M.I.A recently, you probably know all too well that you won’t be able to claim interest soon. As sure as the sun will rise, costs will continue to rise, and while interest rates are currently at record lows, they are also expected to rise in the next couple of years. Do some quick math’s, and check your property’s ability to generate income, while also ensuring the properties are up to rental standards. Check how long you’ve fixed your interest rates for as well. Add up all these costs and give us an indication of your plans for your portfolio in the next few years – there could be some sneaky tax hacks in there that you didn’t know about.

Hold or sell

Are you chasing capital gains, or do you buy for yield? In the past, investors were willing to run their rentals at a loss as they expect house prices to rise, but this can be risky because property prices won’t keep rising forever! Alternatively, you can focus on getting a good yield and have the property pay for itself instead of dipping into your own pocket for the next 20 years. You can calculate the yield by dividing the property income by property value and comparing its value with other rental properties or investment opportunities. Arm yourself with data before deciding!

New builds

If you wish to add another property to your portfolio but are not sure how long you would hold it for, you can look into buying new builds. Maintenance and repair costs are lower and you would still be able to take advantage of the five year bright-line test, and old interest deductibility rules. However, IRD is still determining how the new legislation will deal with new builds, so you might want to hold that thought for now.

Investment properties are still income-generating assets despite the recent changes in legislation! You may not be able to claim the funding costs in the coming years, but you can still claim other operating expenses that were incurred in generating your rental income. You may not bother claiming for small expenses, but it all adds up, so be sure to claim for everything that’s available to you.

Property tax deductions

– repairs and maintenance expenses 

– professional service fees, such as that of property

managers, lawyers and yours truly – accountants

– rates and insurance

– travel expenses to and from your property (for inspection or repairs)

– depreciation on capital expenses, including appliances, heat pumps and whiteware

– legal fees associated with buying a rental property up to $10,000

Got any questions about property investment and the recent tax changes? Give us a buzz and we’ll give you tips on how to make the most of your investment properties!

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Business Accountants: Understanding Changes in Residential Property Taxation

Recent years have seen significant adjustments to the tax landscape, particularly concerning residential property. The government has responded to calls from various quarters to address investor demand in this sector. Notably, recent changes have been initiated to reverse tax policies affecting residential property, aligning with promises made by both National and ACT during their election campaigns.

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