Is it easy to prepare a SMSF tax return/other compliance? - Aussie Stock Forums

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  1. #1

    Default Is it easy to prepare a SMSF tax return/other compliance?

    hello. i want to save my parents some money.

    * they run their own smsf
    * they are in accumulation phase
    * cost of getting the tax return done, audited, other compliance costs $2500 pa
    * very straight forward SMSF, no tricks
    * i am an accountant but no expert in this field

    I believe it cant be too hard to prepare the tax return and other compliance required (minutes of meeting etc) so wonder if anyone else does it themselves and how easy/hard it is and any thoughts on the matter.

    The question that i am most stuck on is that the accounts need to be audited so how would i go about this and what entails 'accounts'. Can i do this on a spreadsheet or does it have to be a program?

    any thoughts are appreciated.


  2. #2

    Default Re: Is it easy to prepare a SMSF tax return/other compliance?

    The ATO is very specific as to how the SMSF tax return is to be done.
    I understand there are a few variations of the necessary software.
    It is anything but simple. Mine is always about 2cm thick.

    You would need to prepare the work and then get another accountant to do the audit. That accountant needs to also understand the specific requirements of the SMSF.

    I'd suggest phoning the ATO and finding out exactly what is required.
    The penalties for non-compliance are significant.
    Bear in mind if you do it yourself, the audit needs to be completed before the tax return is lodged.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Is it easy to prepare a SMSF tax return/other compliance?

    Another thing to note is the ATO used to be more 'guiding' than 'punishing'. However, this trend has changed and they have begun to crack down on SMFS quite hard.
    I believe effort to be a finite resource. Something to be used only when there are no other options available.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Is it easy to prepare a SMSF tax return/other compliance?

    Hi Benn,

    The compliance work for SMSF's is getting harder each year. This years return is far more complex in regards to the reporting, and even the ATO and tax agents can't get it right on the format. I prepared my own as I do each year using the ATO form of their website and send it to my accountant to get audited and lodged, but he sent it back saying the form he was told to use was way different.

    I have been searching for a cheap but professional admin company that does it all. You can google "SMSF" and find quite a few, but be very carful of the terms and conditions, as many get you on fees and they can be quite expensive.

    I did review many of them and found one i thought tick all the boxes. www.yoursuperadmin.com.au. They seem to have a fixed fee of $1650pa, which I think is increasing in Nov to $1705pa. It a one stop shop, they do it all, even give you online access to your fund in real time. I like this part of the service, as they do admin all year round and especially as my fund is in acc phase they have a tax "what if" tool to manage CGT.

    Your Super Admin is worth a look. Alternatively their is BGL, however you need to input all the transactions yourself, and if you get it wrong, it is a nightmare. Somtimes you really do not know what the software is doing. I currently use it to prepare my financials, but seem to spead more time entering transactions than actually manageing the money.

    I hope this helps.


  5. #5
    Sir Osisofliver's Avatar
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    Default Re: Is it easy to prepare a SMSF tax return/other compliance?


    Whilst I have CPA status...I don't do my own tax return...Nor do I do it for close family and friends.

    Mainly because I never seem to have the time but more importantly because my time is more valuable than the accountant I am paying.

    So I think you need to ask yourself the following questions.

    1) What is my time worth?
    2) Is it worth the aggravation?
    3) If you stuff it up...what are the consequences? (Because if my accountant stuffs it up I can always ream him for it).
    4) How much of a percentage is the $2,500.00 (You haven't told us the size of the SMSF). It's very different if the SMSF size is $500K or $50K

    Good luck

    Sir O

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