Here's a great checklist for your end of year financial plans. Deadline: 30 June 2012!
- Firstly, check how much you've contributed to super so far this financial year. Don't get stung with excess contributions tax by putting in more than the caps.
If you're under age 50, you can contribute up to $25,000 and if you're over age 50, you can contribute up to $50,000 in pre-tax (concessional/deductible) contributions.
- For the self employed, get your concessional (tax deductible) super contributions in before 30 June.
- For employees, you can still arrange (or increase) salary sacrifice (concessional/pre-tax) contributions with your employer for May and June.
Are you expecting a bonus this year? You may want to use this to top up your super fund - make sure you have your salary sacrifice arrangement in place before you get your bonus.
- You can also contribute up to $150,000 this year as a non-concessional (after-tax) contribution.
- If you earn under $61,920, making a non-concessional (personal) contribution of up to $1,000 to super may grant you access to the Government Co-Contribution.
- For your spouse (under 65, or 70 if working), you can add personal contributions to their fund and if your spouse is on a low income, you may be able to claim an income tax offset of up to $540 for contributions you make on their behalf.
- Ensure that any existing death benefit nominations remain valid. It's a great time also to review any potential changes to your total estate plan, including Wills and Powers of Attorney.
Transition to Retirement
- For those already in a Transition to Retirement strategy, you may benefit from topping up your super and making an extra withdrawal from your pension account.
- If you're running a Transition to Retirement strategy, discuss your needs for next financial year and determine whether a refresh of your strategy will be of benefit to you.
Account Based Pensions
- Work out or discuss with your adviser your income needs for 2012/13 and prepare for adjustments to your pension payments.
Extras for SMSFs
- It is important to remember that you cannot prepay interest on a limited recourse borrowing within a SMSF, as the pre-payment rules only allow apportionment over the period to which the interest relates (i.e. only deductible in the relevant year).
- Obtain valuations for assets such as property, artwork, collectibles and other fund assets that should be valued to their market value at 30 June. This is not only best-practice for SMSFs, but is important for matters including the in-house asset rules.
- Ensure the you have sufficiently minuted the fund’s activities in the past year and have reviewed the fund’s investment strategy.
- Defer non-essential income until the new financial year
- Review your investment portfolio to determine whether investments should be sold to offset any capital gains or losses made throughout the year.
- Get your Capital Gains Tax concessions by holding onto assets for more than 12 months.
- Earned more than you anticipated? Need a big tax deduction straight away? Consider managed investment schemes or borrowing to invest and pre-paying the interest. Careful! Be sure the benefits outweigh the risks with these types of investments. Remember that over time a good investment will be much more valuable than a tax break this year.
- Review the income distributions in your family trust and any necessary elections are made so you maintain franking credits.
- Receipts in a shoe box? Get your ducks in a row for your accountant. It'll save you time and money on accounting fees and you'll ensure you maximise your eligible deductions!
- Establish your Income Protection cover before 30 June and make an annual premium payment to receive the full tax deduction in this financial year.
- For existing Income Protection policies (outside super), remember to put the details in your tax return to claim the deduction.
This list is extensive, but not exhaustive. There may be things to consider particular to your specific needs, so ensure you've got your bases covered and talk to your financial adviser today. Don't leave it until the last minute!
In : Financial Planning
Tags: "end of financial year" "financial plan" "superannuation" "super" "save money"