- On 09/12/2019
With 2020 fast approaching, now is the best time to think about what you want to achieve in the coming months. Most people’s goals may involve starting a new hobby or travelling more, but tradies have different priorities. To make it big in 2020, you must set smart and attainable goals for your trade business. If you need some help with that, we’ve provided a comprehensive checklist.
1. Know what you can claim
When tax time comes around, you’ll want to get the most returns possible to reinvest in your business. This requires you to know what deductions to claim for work-related expenses. According to the Australian Taxation Office (ATO), you can claim deductions for the following expenses:
Transport – This includes fuel and servicing expenses to get to and from jobsites.
Protective equipment – This includes Such as hard hats, gloves, and other safety apparel purchased within the financial year.
Sunglasses and sunscreen – These apply to outdoor jobs that require strong sun protection.
Education – Any training program that’s under 12 months long can be claimed as long as it’s relevant to your job and is paid in full.
Phone bills – Using mobile phones for business calls is tax-deductible.
Tools under $300 – Tools that cost less than $300 can be claimed for the full cost.
Equipment under $30,000 – If your company earns less than $2 million a year, you can claim deductions for equipment that costs below $30,000.
2. Stay up to date on regulations
New regulations involving tradies are enacted every year, most of which involve tax policies. Keep track of these changes to avoid massive penalties and fines from the ATO and other governing bodies. Below are some regulations you need to be aware of:
The Goods and Services Tax (GST) program will continue until 2023. This means you need to issue tax invoices for customers and lodge accurate activity statements to receive your GST refund.
The deadline for the instant asset write-off for equipment under $30,000 is June 30, 2020. From July 1, the write-off only applies to assets under $1,000.
The tax rate for small businesses with a turnover below $50 million will fall from 27.5% to 26% in 2020–2021. Unincorporated small businesses will also get a tax discount rate, increasing from 8% to 13% in 2020–2021.
The National Construction Code posts new requirements for safety, health, accessibility, and construction of new buildings and structures in Australia.
3. Go to trade shows and conferences
Attending industry events provides many valuable opportunities. For one, you get to network with well-established business owners who can expose you to new ideas and processes. You also get the chance to meet with potential clients and partners who can help you grow your business.
Once you’ve built a network, you can position yourself as an expert among your peers and clients. Tradie events even give you a pulse on the latest trends and get you on the ground floor of game-changing innovations. So what events should you attend?
If you’re in the construction industry, the Sydney Build 2020 Expo on March 19 is a must. On the same date, HVAC tradies can go to the ARBS Melbourne trade fair. In Perth, you can sign up for the Perth Tradie Expo 2020 to find out about the latest tools, workwear or skills training and purchase at discount prices. The Workplace Health & Safety Show on May 27 is a great place to learn about the latest safety practices and gear. Finally, there are building and home improvement events across the country throughout the year.
4. Optimise your financials
To set your business up for success, you need a healthy cash flow. To achieve this, you need to do the following:
Invoice customers immediately and make payments easy with various collection methods. Offer BPAY, PayPal, credit card, direct debit, and cash options.
Set dynamic price books in your job management app for easy and accurate job quoting.
Use accounting software like MYOB Online, Xero, and QuickBooks to track payments. You should also send regular statements to clients to remind them of outstanding fees.
Minimise fuel costs and travel time between worksites with your job management app’s scheduling features.
Lease or purchase secondhand equipment to drive down costs. Pay supplier invoices early to avoid late payment fees and enjoy early payment discounts.
Pay supplier invoices early to avoid late payment fees and enjoy early payment discounts.
Integrate your job management app with your accounting software to forecast cash flow. This way, you’ll know the best time to make investments or when to be more conservative.
5. Take advantage of technology trends
Adopting new technologies allows you to save big money and outperform the competition. Here are some of the most disruptive technologies to consider in 2020:
Drones – These can be used for surveying the land, inspections, and job site surveillance.
Augmented reality – This technology allows builders, painters, and designers to interact with the jobsite before making concrete decisions.
3D printing – With this tech, you can produce building parts and electronics with fewer resources.
Social media – Facebook and Instagram are effective platforms for promoting your services to property owners.
Job management platform – Programs like WorkBuddy make quoting, expense tracking, invoicing, and job scheduling a breeze.
There are sure to be many surprises in 2020. That’s why you need to stay informed and implement the right tools for your business. WorkBuddy is must-have job management app in your digital toolbox. It enables you to take control of your projects, understand your financial situation, and improve your cash flow. Call us now or request a free demo to learn the full capabilities of WorkBuddy.