What if you inherited or would like to leave your beneficiaries shares when you pass away, do you have good record keeping? What if some shares have a long dividend reinvestment plan, takeovers, bonus offer and share purchase plan and there was no record keeping. Investors who don’t pay attention to keeping good records pay a price in the future
Record keeping is simply collecting and storing paperwork and information relating to your shares. IT DOESN’T NEED TO BE COMPLICATED.
Why keeping good records is important:
- Manage tax effectively and declare the correct income and capital gains
- Prepare Estate Planning documents
- Monitor Performance
Some tips for successful record keeping
Over the years we have identified some tips that will help you to keep better records:
- Find a system you’re comfortable with
There is something out there for everyone. From filing manually, excel spreadsheet to cloud software. Once you have found system you are comfortable and like using, stick with it.
- File your receipts
Keep your receipts, bills and invoices. You can organise by date or category. Contracts, insurance, leases, assets purchase and any important/ legal paperwork should be filed separately. With technology today, you can save all documents onto such sites as the icloud, google drive, drop box and place in folders like manually place in the old traditional filing cabinets.
- Check how long you need to keep records
According to the ATO, you must keep proper records to your tax affairs for at least five years from when you lodge your tax return in case the ATO ask you to substantiate your claim. If you carry forward losses, you must keep the records until the end of the period of review fro the income tax return in which the loss was deducted. However if you hold shares, it is important to retain the history and dividend statements to assist with correct capital gains history. Whilst the share registry holds some history, some do not go all the way back to inception if held the shares for several years or changed shareholder reference number or chess sponsored number. Some share registries can charge a fee per statement which becomes very costly.