The annual tax refund survey conducted by Homeloans.com.au revealed several interesting trends around tax returns, but the most notable was the rise of DIY tax returns.
According to the survey, there is a trend towards people doing their own tax returns – up from 31 per cent in 2014 to 35 per cent this year.
While the majority of taxpayers still use a tax agent or accountant, the survey showed a distinct difference in user rates between those under 35 and those older than 35.
"Almost two thirds of respondents over the age of 35 opted to have a professional prepare their return, while more than half of the younger cohort planned to complete their own returns or have a partner, other family member or friend do it for them," a statement from Homeloans.com.au said.
"Those who are more likely to use an expert to do their tax refund are the self-employed (88 per cent compared with 54 per cent for the other segments)."
The survey also showed that while fewer people are expecting a tax refund this year, those who are are more optimistic about the amount.
"There’s a continuing trend that people are expecting larger tax refunds," Will Keall, homeloans.com.au’s national marketing manager, said.
"And the optimism is certainly evident among the younger age groups. For those aged under 25, the figure was 45 per cent that are expecting a bigger refund, while for those aged over 25, it was more than a quarter."
Other findings of the Homeloans survey included:
• Buying investment properties was a priority for just 2.5 per cent of respondents compared to 4.4 per cent in 2015.
• Younger respondents are more likely than other age groups to put their refund towards a home deposit (14 per cent compared with 3 per cent), while 34 per cent plan to spend it on a holiday, and 48 per cent of respondents said they’ll invest/save the money.