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Need accountant.

Discussion in 'Accounting, Tax & Legal' started by Compleks, 27th May, 2007.

  1. Compleks

    Compleks Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    18th May, 2007
    Posts:
    348
    Location:
    Melbourne
    I think I need some advice before I get myself into any trouble.

    I'm 21 and just recently started working in a gym. I get payed in cash from my private clients, and am payed via cheque by the gym owner. I am employed as a contractor/sole trader I believe.

    I don't believe I earned enough to be taxed for this financial year, but I need to get myself sorted for next year.

    I want to avoid doing anything dodgy/illegal, or atleast understand what would be considered illegal. This is my first 'real' job, so the whole process is unfamiliar to me.

    What would be the wise thing to do in my situation?
    How soon do I need to find an accountant in order to get myself organised financially?
    What services would I require an accountant for?
    Any recommendations? (I live in Melbourne)

    Because I would also like to start investing, I really think I might need some professional guidance/assistance.


    Thanks.
     
  2. coopranos

    coopranos Well-Known Member

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    Location:
    Perth
    There is only one legal way to do it: declare all your income and pay the appropriate tax on it.

    Are you an empolyee of the gym? If so then you probably dont have a whole lot to worry about. The employer with withhold tax and pay you super.
    As for the cash jobs, you are definitely legally required to report it, although I seriously doubt the majority of people in your situation actually would (or would report only a very small % of it).
    Probably many gym instructors wouldnt get insurance for their private cash work either, I would personally be investigating this with an insurance company.
    I think from the sound of things all you would need an accountant for would be to do your year end tax work, just keep good records so it is cheap for you!
     
  3. Compleks

    Compleks Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    18th May, 2007
    Posts:
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    Location:
    Melbourne
    Thanks for the advice.

    I want to do the right thing, though it's tempting not to.

    I am a contractor at the gym, so I don't get any tax withheld or super payments etc... As long as I quote my ABN when invoicing, I get the full amount by cheque.

    I'm just not sure what records I need to keep.

    Am I legally required to keep books to track my income?
    What would I need to give my accountant at the end of the year?
    What deductions can I make?

    Cheers guys.
     
  4. MattR

    MattR Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    23rd May, 2007
    Posts:
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    Location:
    Sydney
    Hi Compleks

    The tax free threshold is $6000 so if under that limit you won't pay income tax.

    When invoicing the gym you need to make sure that you are covering yourself economically. For arguments sake lets say as an employee you would be paid $100 per hour (nice round number OK). Then as a contractor you want to charge at least $100, plus $9 (9% super), plus say $5 (5% workers comp insurance ~ I'm only guessing the premium rate) and then say $2 for holiday pay = $116 per hour.

    The easiest system for your accountant is the Cash system - when you are paid or when you pay for something then it forms part of your income and deductions. You'd need to give your accountant a summary of your receipts and payments - if you do that rather than give your accountant a shoe box they'll be grateful and not charge you for sorting through your mess.

    Things to deduct/claim, by no means a definitive list
    - sports clothing
    - training courses
    - travel for work purposes
    - phone for work purposes
    - items that you might resale to your clients
    - office expenses
    - marketing expenses

    You can't claim supplements or vitamins that you use as they are for personal benefit. Similarly medical treatments like massage etc you can't claim unless they come under workers compensation claims.

    Now as a "coach" you are specifically excluded from the tax laws for sportspeople, such as the ability to average income.

    You want to also aske your accountant about the Simplified Tax System and the 25% tax rebate available under that system.

    Good luck
     
  5. Compleks

    Compleks Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    18th May, 2007
    Posts:
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    Location:
    Melbourne
    Thanks mate, that was very useful.

    At the moment I just use a diary to record my income - cash and cheques. I also record my rent payments, for hiring out the gym space when taking privates. Would that be deductible? I don't receive any receipts for those payments.

    As far as travel goes (to and from the gym), do I need to use a log book? Or can they simply use the average calculations for fuel expenses?

    Also, my phone is pre-paid, so I don't have any records. Would I need to use a phone log to claim deductions? Probably not even worth the hassle at this stage.

    Marketing expenses would definitely be something I need to research. Thanks for the heads up on that one.

    Can anyone recommend a good way to keep track of all this information? What would be easiest for me and my accountant?

    Can anyone recommend a good accountant in Melbourne?

    Lastly, with the clothing. Could I claim martial arts uniforms? I believe I read somewhere that uniforms can be claimed if they are protective, or if they are used to prevent other clothing from being damaged.
    The uniforms retails for about $200-$250 each, and would fit the previous description.


    Cheers.
     
  6. MattR

    MattR Well-Known Member

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Sydney
    Answers below

     
  7. Compleks

    Compleks Well-Known Member

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    Location:
    Melbourne
    Thanks Matt, you're a champion.

    And for the record, the owner is more than a bit dodgy. Though I think it's more from ignorance than anything.
     
  8. Jacque

    Jacque Team InvestEd

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    16th Jun, 2005
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    1,885
    Location:
    Sydney
    Hi Compleks

    There's nothing to stop you from using an accountant in a different state- especially if you locate one who's in tune with your needs and is a good communicator- as Matt appears to be.

    For many years I used an interstate accountant with no problems. Everything was done by phone and email pretty much anyway. Perhaps Matt can help you?
     
  9. MattR

    MattR Well-Known Member

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Sydney
    Yes, happy to be of help - send me a PM if interested.

    Cheers Matt R
     
  10. Compleks

    Compleks Well-Known Member

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    Location:
    Melbourne
    How much do I owe you so far? :D
     
  11. MattR

    MattR Well-Known Member

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    Posts:
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    Location:
    Sydney
    At my typing speed....heaps;) :D
     
  12. handyandy

    handyandy Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    6th Jun, 2006
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    Location:
    Sydney Nsw
    The thing that hasn't been mentioned so far is the need to ensure that you have some applicable insurance cover.

    In the case of using the gym for private customers where the customer is injured who is going to be at fault? If the owner is dodgy then he may not have all the appropriate covers in place.

    Cheers