June 15, 2021 . 3 minutes read

SHB Tax Tips

Lodge on time

If you’re lodging your own tax return, you need to lodge it by 1 November 2021. You can do this using myTax via myGov or through a paper return.

If you use a registered tax agent, we have special lodgment schedule and can lodge returns for clients later than 1 November 2021. You’ll need to get on our client list before 31 October to take advantage of late lodgment dates.

Are you in business?

It’s important to understand the differences between a hobby and a business for tax and other purposes. There’s no simple definition and sometimes what starts out as a hobby grows into something more. Factors to consider include whether you intend to make a profit, repeat similar types of activities or carry out activities in a businesslike manner. 

Cash payments

It’s ok to receive income in cash rather than electronically but you must declare these amounts in your tax return.

If you’re an employee who’s paid cash, your employer must still pay you the correct award wages, withhold tax from your pay and pay your super as required by law. They must also provide you with an income statement at tax time which should match up with the income they paid you.

Home office expenses

Working from home may entitle you to claim a deduction for home office expenses like electricity, office equipment depreciation and phone and internet expenses.

However, coffee, snacks and toilet paper aren’t deductible and, for most employees, neither are rent, mortgage interest, water or rates.

Superannuation contributions

Consider maximising your concessional or non-concessional contributions before the end of the financial year with a concessional contribution cap of $25,000 for the 2021 income year.

Check your superannuation contribution limits and don't leave it until 30 June to make your contributions as your super fund will not receive the contribution in time.

Travel expenses

You can claim certain travel expenses incurred when travelling overnight for work. These may include meals, accommodation, transport fares, bridge and road tolls, car parking, car hire fees and other incidental costs.

Expenses for contactors

You can claim a deduction for most costs you incur in running your business, for example travel, car, marketing, home-based business expenses and business finance costs. For asset purchases, consider the simplified depreciation rules. Make sure you account for private use correctly, and keep good records.

Cash flow boost

Check that you have correctly received cash flow boost amounts. Cash flow boost payments are classified as non-assessable, non-exempt income so no tax will be payable.


JobKeeper payments are assessable as ordinary income. You can claim deductions for the wage payments, including amounts subsidised by JobKeeper, you made to employees.

Ensure that your reporting and documentation are correct. You must keep this information for five years after the payment was made.

Optimise depreciation deductions

There are several ways you can depreciate your assets. The Federal Government introduced and has extended the instant asset write-off, temporary full expensing and backing business investment measures as part of its COVID-19 economic stimulus packages.

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