How to get the most out of your tax return
The contents provided on this page are for informational purposes only and do not constitute financial advice. Consider your personal circumstances and objectives before making any financial decisions.
With tax time fast approaching, you might be busy thinking about all the paperwork you need to lodge your tax return. Try using our tips for preparing to lodge your tax return!
But don’t forget, now is also a good time to explore the different things you could try and buy to get the most out of your tax return.
Let’s take a look at 7 ways you could maximise your tax return this year!
1. Buy a new laptop or computer for work
If you’re in need of a new laptop or computer for work, you might be able to find a good deal during end of financial year (EOFY) sales in June, then claim your purchase as a deduction when you lodge your tax return in July! This allows you to claim your expenses almost instantly, rather than waiting a whole year.
This can also include a monitor, printer and software or programs, such as subscriptions and anti-virus software.
Keep in mind:
- You must be using the equipment you claim for work.
- You must have a record to support your claim, such as a receipt.
- How you claim your deduction changes whether your claim is more or less than $300. You must follow the deduction guidelines outlined by the ATO.
Check out Finder’s list of EOFY deals and tips here.
2. Sign up for a course
Thinking of attending a course or learning new skills to help you in your current role (and maybe even give you the opportunity to increase your salary)?
You could consider signing up for a course, seminar or conference now so you can include your expenses when you lodge your tax return in July.
Keep in mind:
- Your course must be relevant to your current employment.
- You can claim costs associated with registration and a portion of your transport expenses.
- You can only claim accommodation and meals if you’re required to travel overnight to attend the course.
There are also separate ATO guidelines specific to claiming self-education expenses that relate to your employment.
3. Update your professional memberships
This might be a good time to renew your professional memberships if you have any that are up for renewal soon, so you can claim the costs involved in this when you lodge your tax return in July.
This might include: union fees, professional licences and accreditations, working with children checks or other subscriptions relating to your work.
Keep in mind:
- Your expense must be related to your current employment.
- You should keep a copy of your receipt or other evidence of the costs you’ve incurred.
- There may be specific ATO requirements for claiming your expense, depending on the type of membership or accreditation fee you are claiming.
4. Ask about a Tax Refund Advance
One way you could get the most out of your tax return is by getting early access to your tax refund. That means, instead of waiting weeks for your tax refund, you could advance a portion of your tax refund in minutes.
Beforepay currently offers a Tax Refund Advance option, in partnership with H&R Block.
This allows eligible H&R Block customers to Cash Out a portion of their estimated tax refund early (minus H&R Block fees) for a 5% fixed fee.
Keep in mind:
- You must lodge your tax return with H&R Block and meet the eligibility and assessment criteria for both H&R Block and Beforepay to be eligible for a Tax Refund Advance.
- If eligible, the Tax Refund Advance allows you to Cash Out up to 50% of your estimated tax refund (minus H&R Block fees), up to a maximum of $1,000.
- H&R Block will repay your Tax Refund on your behalf (minus H&R Block fees) when they receive your tax refund from the ATO.
You can book an appointment with your nearest participating H&R Block office to lodge your tax and discuss your eligibility for a Tax Refund Advance. And if you’re a Beforepay customer, you could enjoy 10%* off your individual tax return with H&R Block! This offer is available for a limited time only, exclusive to Beforepay customers. What better way to get the most out of your tax return!
Find out more and book and book an appointment with H&R Block here.
5. Donate to charity
You could consider giving back to the community and supporting a cause that’s important to you by making a donation before the end of the financial year. This will allow you to claim any deductions for gifts or donations when you lodge your tax return from July 1.
You can claim gifts or donations in the form of money or property or shares, but you can’t claim gifts or donations that “provide you with a personal benefit”, according to the ATO. This includes items such as raffle tickets or fundraising merchandise.
Keep in mind:
- Your donation must be over $2.
- Your donation must be made to an organisation with DGR status, which means they are registered to receive tax deductible gifts or donations.
- You must keep a record of your donation as evidence of your claim, like a receipt.
6. Do your stationery shop
You could take advantage of EOFY sales to stock up on the stationery and office supplies you need for work purposes.
This can include items from pens, paper and diaries to printer ink and logbooks (e.g. to keep a record of your vehicle expenses if you use your personal vehicle for work, such as travelling between workplace sites or business meetings).
Keep in mind:
- Your stationery expenses must be used for work purposes.
- As of February 2023, if you claim your stationery expenses as part of your working from home deductions you cannot submit a separate claim for stationery and office supplies.
- How you claim your stationery and office expenses changes if the total cost is more than $300. You can find out more details and calculate your deduction on the ATO website.
Looking for some good deals? You could check stores like Officeworks for EOFY specials.
7. Top up your super fund
You may be able to claim a tax deduction for any personal contributions you make to your super fund. This is a separate voluntary payment from your bank account into your super fund, and does not include any contributions made by your employer.
Keep in mind:
- You need to notify your super fund that you intend to claim a personal contribution and this must be acknowledged by them.
- You must meet the eligibility criteria for claiming a personal super contribution deduction.
- Any personal super contributions will count towards your concessional contributions cap.
Claiming a tax deduction for a personal super contribution can be complicated so make sure you check the details outlined by the ATO here or speak to a tax expert.
Knowing about the different ways you could maximise tax time could help you get more out of your tax return and, potentially, unlock some extra cash for you! This might look like taking advantage of EOFY sales, understanding the different expenses you can claim, or exploring options like a Tax Refund Advance for early access to your tax refund. By understanding your options, you’ll be able to make informed decisions about your finances, keeping you in control of your money!
Want to know what specific expenses you might be able to claim based on your job and industry? Check out our 7 tips to help you prepare for and maximise your tax return.
Remember, everyone’s financial circumstances are different. For advice about your financial situation or specific information about lodging your tax return please speak to a tax expert or other finance professional.
Disclaimer: Beforepay Group Ltd ABN: 63 633 925 505 (Beforepay) allows eligible customers to access their pay and/or access their tax refund, and also provides budgeting tools. The views provided in this article include factual information and the personal opinions of relevant Beforepay staff. This article contains selected summary information only and is provided for general information purposes only. Beforepay and its related bodies corporate make no representation or warranty, express or implied, as to the accuracy, completeness, timeliness or reliability of the contents of this blog post and do not accept any liability for any loss whatsoever arising from the use of this information. Please read our Terms of Service carefully before deciding whether to use any of our services.
*Offer available to new H&R Block clients only and at participating H&R Block offices only. 10% discount is valid for a single transaction (one year’s tax return) and only for individual tax returns. Offer cannot be used in conjunction with any other offer. Cannot be used in conjunction with the $99 streamline pricing package. Offer not redeemable for cash. Offer not transferable. H&R Block may withdraw or change this offer at any time. Offer only valid until 30th September 2023. To redeem this offer, clients must provide proof of their status as an existing Beforepay customer during their appointment with H&R Block.