The Australian Taxation Office is ramping up scrunity of the rental property market in a bid to stamp out dishonest lodgement claims.
The ATO will be looking closely at the dishonest practise of investors declaring their rental properties vacant when in fact they are tenanted and receiving rent. In 2018 they will be taking steps including approaching real estate agents/ property managers and monitoring electricity and gas records to identify fraudulent claims. Over the last few months, the ATO has already investigated 100,000 rental properties.
Data from the ATO shows that deductions claimed for rental properties are exceeding the rental income earned for privately owned rental properties. There is $40.1 billion of income and $43.6 billion of expenses.
There are concerns that many landlords are not declaring their rental income and many more are overstating their deductions, which has led to the tighter cross-checking measures.