Property Investors Beware: New study finds one third of Depreciation providers could be in breach of the law
22 OCTOBER 2013 — Quantity surveying expert and author, Tyron Hyde, says more than 1 in 3 firms providing property investors with depreciation reports are still not registered tax agents.
Under the Tax Agent Services Act 2009 (TASA), all providers of property depreciation schedules must be registered Tax Agents. But according to a study conducted by Mr Hyde’s firm, Washington Brown, a surprisingly high number still aren’t.
“The Act was introduced ensure firms have the adequate skill set and insurances to protect consumers,” said Mr Hyde.
“The fact that so many firms are unregistered is definitely a concern, and a case of buyer beware.”
Anyone who owns an investment property is entitled to claim depreciation on their asset. Depreciation covers both the wear and tear of internal items like ovens, carpets and lights, along with the bricks and mortar.
The study was undertaken by Mr Hyde’s Quantity Surveying firm Washington Brown, and looked at more than 80 firms Australia wide.
“The most common illegal provider we found appeared to be from Property Valuers and Building Inspectors offering this service,” said Mr Hyde.
“What this means is that property investors are buying and submitting depreciation claims that could be in breach of the Act.”
There are over 2.5 million property investors in Australia and each year 1.6 million claim depreciation, according to the ATO.
Mr Hyde said there are 3 main ways to ensure you receive an acceptable report from a registered Tax Agent:
● Ask the service provider what Tax Agent Number will be printed on the report.
● Visit the website www.tpb.gov.au and ensure that Tax Agent number is valid.
● Ensure the service provider has current Professional Indemnity Insurance.
“The worst case I saw was a company that proudly displayed the Tax Agent Number on its website, but when I checked on the Taxation Board’s website it turns out the firm’s registration had been revoked due to insufficient qualifications,” said Mr Hyde.
These types of firms risk swift penalties under subsection 50-5(1) of the Tax Agent Services Act.
“And I’m not talking small bickies here. The penalty for individuals is up to $27,500 and $137,500 for corporations.”
Mr Hyde is one of Australia’s leading experts on property depreciation and recently released the only published book on the topic titled “CLAIM IT! - A Property Investors & Developers Guide to Depreciation”, which is available from
He also runs Washington Brown, a Nation-Wide quantity surveying firm that specialises in saving property investors money by preparing property depreciation schedules.
Tyron Hyde & Washington Brown are both registered Tax Agents and for more information visit http://www.washingtonbrown.com.au/tax-agent-services
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P: 1300 99 06 12 M: 0414 653 652
- Contact Information
- Tyron Hyde
- Washington Brown
- (61) 414653652
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