Upcoming Events: Westie Wednesday 2014

Every year Foundation for Youth Development (FYD) Auckland is helping thousands of children and young people in West Auckland to discover possibility, transform lives, and reach their potential. Through proven and acclaimed programmes Kiwi Can, Project K and Stars, FYD is able to help build self-esteem, promote good values and teach valuable life, education and health…


Beware Tax Pitfalls Of Apartments

Grant Profile PicUHY Haines Norton’s Managing Director Grant Brownlee outlines some of the tax pitfalls to be aware of concerning apartments.

Buying a serviced apartment may be seen as an attractive investment option, particularly if you have children planning to attend University in the future and you don’t fancy the idea of paying rent for their accommodation away from home.

However, serviced apartments have the potential to hit you very hard with unexpected GST and income tax bills all as a result of innocent changes in your family circumstances.

Let’s say you purchased your serviced apartment from a GST-registered party and the apartment had a management lease in place.  The apartment was being managed as short term stay accommodation and you purchased it as a ‘going concern’ so the transaction was ‘zero rated’ for GST.  In other words, you paid no GST on the purchase.  To achieve this ‘zero GST’ result you were required to become registered for GST.  Every month the management company pays you rent net of GST, management fees and other expenses.  Everything is rosy.


How Much Is My Business Worth?

Forensic Accounting_Valuations_LitigationUHY Director Tim Livingstone addresses a frequently asked question concerning business valuations.

A question we regularly receive from both clients and non-clients is on the value of their business.  The value of a business gets down to what the business has to sell.  Most SME (small-to medium-sized) businesses will be selling two types of assets: tangible and intangible.

The tangible assets normally include stock and fixed assets.  Intangible assets represent the non-physical items a business owns that generate income and provide a competitive advantage.  Some intangible assets can be legally transferred to a purchaser such as a franchise, lease or patent.  Others cannot and include a trained work force and key customer relationships.


Perspectives on Property Investment

Property Investment Structuring Service IconLast month UHY Haines Norton, in conjunction with Quinovic, Mortgage Link and MAINTAIN TO PROFIT, held an information seminar entitled ‘The Keys to Successful Property Investment’.  Property investment continues to be popular with New Zealanders looking to boost their income and provide additional financial security for their futures.

Tenancy Strategies

Our first speaker was Brendon Stuckey, Principal of property management company Quinovic West Auckland, who presented several strategies for successfully tenanting properties, including:

  1. Always conduct reference checks on tenants.  Any potential tenant who has difficulty providing referees who are not family or friends could be cause for concern.
  2. Always conduct credit checks on tenants.  Although this sounds obvious, many landlords simply do not get around to doing this – to their own detriment.
  3. Take a photographic catalogue of your property.  This protects both the landlord and the tenant from claims of damage that are unsubstantiated.
  4. Clearly outline the expectations set out in the tenancy agreement to avoid any ambiguity.
  5. Opting for a fixed-term tenancy rather than a periodic tenancy offers a measure of protection against tenants who may give notice at undesirable times, such as December/January, when properties are harder to let.

Brendon then went on to discuss the critical issue of meth contamination in New Zealand rental properties.  He explained that, contrary to popular belief, it is not just a lower demographic issue – many meth cooks and dealers have good cash flow and high-end lifestyles.   With over 70% of meth labs being found in rental properties, this is a huge concern for landlords.  If contaminated, it is not just the expense of replacing all contaminated furnishings and wall linings, but the record remains on the council property file forever and can seriously affect the capital value of your property.