Tag: review your position

Burning Issues for Employers

SUPERSTREAM – COMPULSORY FOR ALL! 

All employers are now required to be SuperStream compliant. The 31 October compliance extension granted by the ATO to smaller employers has now passed. Note that there are no general exemptions from SuperStream – all employers must comply except for:
  • Contributions to your own SMSF (i.e.if you’re a related-party employer) – for example, if you’re an employee of your family business and your Superannuation Guarantee contributions go to your SMSF.
  • Personal contributions – for example, if you’re a sole trader and you contribute to a superannuation fund for yourself
Fines of up to $8,500 can now be imposed by the ATO on employers who are not SuperStream compliant. For more information on the SuperStream regime including compliance solutions, see the September/October 2016 edition of your ATR Bimonthly newsletter which is available in the Members Area if you are a subscriber.

SUPERANNUATION GUARANTEE

Still on superannuation… although the ATO allows an extra month for businesses to lodge their December quarterly BAS (the due date is February 28 regardless of whether you are lodging online via the Business Portal, by paper or via a Tax Agent/BAS Agent) there is no equivalent extension for the payment of Superannuation Guarantee.

Superannuation Guarantee for the October-December quarter is still due 28 days following the end of the quarter i.e. 28 January 2017. Failure to pay on time (even if you are just one day late) will result in your business being liable for the Superannuation Guarantee Charge. For this reason, if you are closed throughout January, you may wish to consider making the October-December contribution in December.

FINANCE

Following yet another recent reduction by the Reserve Bank, interest rates in Australia are now at record lows (the cash rate is currently at just 1.50%). With talk that rates will remain relatively low into the future, it’s an opportune time to review if you are making the most of them. Have you considered the following?

Fixed rate options. While rates are at an all-time low there may be opportunities to fix your loans or 3 or 5 years at under 5% per annum. Explore your options. Some borrowers may wish to fix just a portion of their loan.

Review your position. Low interest rates offer an opportunity to refinance or revise your payment schedule to pay your loan off sooner. Talk to your broker to see if there’s a home or business loan that better suits your needs.

Debt reduction. With lower rates, your monthly/fortnightly repayments will be less. Rather than pocketing the difference, if you put the difference into extra  repayments, you can shave years off your loan and, in doing so save thousands in interest. For example, a $500,000 home loan at an interest rate of 7% requires repayments of $3,078 per month over 30 years. At 4.5%, the repayments are $2,533, a difference of $545 a month. If you put that $545 into extra repayments, you can potentially take more than 9 years off the home loan term and save almost $140,000 in interest.

Create an offset account. This is effectively a money source sitting beside your mortgage. Any savings inside this account are effectively offset against your loan which in turn reduces the amount of interest you pay.

Of course, low rates will not be around forever. As a borrower it’s important not to become complacent and to make sure that you still have the capacity to meet your repayment obligation in the event that rates increase.

To continue to read this article (other headings Equipment Purchases & Annual Leave Issues), see the November/December 2016 edition of your ATR Bimonthly newsletter which is available in the Members Area if you are a subscriber, simply log in with your username & password.

Not a subscriber – purchase a ATR subscription here: https://mytaxsavers.com.au/plans/subscriptions/