Ten Top Tips for Tidy Taxes

So, it’s been a busy year and you now have an enormous pile of tax receipts. Let’s get them in order and ready for tax time with these 10 great tips!

Filing receipts for tax time is always daunting, but if you break the task down into bite-sized portions it’s simple. Think of it as paper triage, where  everything is sorted in terms of priority, then actioned accordingly. Better yet, make this the year that you create a system that you can use all year round.

  1. To get your existing tax receipts in order, the first step is to separate your receipts into tax years. Next, and depending on your profession, place
    like-receipts together, such as: research (newsagents, book stores, library fees, internet fees, etc.), transport (taxis, fuel, air fares, etc.) phone bills, work-related education and stationery.
  2. A Clear Plastic File Box, with lid is a good archive solution for keeping your receipts in order and stored for seven years.
  3. Label each section clearly to keep your system up and running and ready for tax day.
  4. If you are setting up a home office, your Howards Storage World receipt might be tax-deductible, so remember to keep the receipt and
    check with your accountant!
  5. Once you have a system in place, create a workflow, either by filing receipts immediately or by creating an on-desk ‘receipts to be filed’ zone that gets actioned each week.
  6. Enter your receipts into a spreadsheet or workbook once a week. Be diligent!
  7. Keep up-to-date with what you can
    deduct. The ATO has a profession specific list covering many occupations at www.ato.gov.au/Individuals/Income-and-deductions/Deductions-you-can-claim/
  8. Keep a photocopy of your credit card bill and bank statement with your receipts. Check your receipts off as they come in and, if you see a charge but can’t find the receipt, contact the seller to have it reissued.
  9. Print and file internet receipts as they arrive in your inbox.
  10. You need to keep your tax claim information and receipts for seven years. By keeping each year in a separate file box you can store easily,
    find simply and always stay one step ahead of the tax panic.

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