What car travel expenses can you claim?

If you use your own car to travel to inspect or maintain your rental property or to collect rent, you can claim an allowable travel expense deduction.

You cannot claim motor vehicle expenses for travel that is incidental to the main purpose of the trip. For example, you cannot claim travel expenses because you drive past the property to 'keep an eye on things' on your way to or from work.

If we select your travel expense claim for review or audit, you must be able to show your reason for visiting the rental property.

Example: Claimable car expenses

Claire decides to inspect her rental property three months after the tenants move in. During the income year, she also makes a number of visits to the property to carry out minor repairs.

Claire travels 162 kilometres during the course of these visits in her car.

Claire works out her car expenses using the cents per kilometre method and claims the following deduction:

Distance travelled   rate per kilometre = deductible amount

162 km  * 66 cents per kilometre = $107

Claire can only claim this deduction for travel expenses associated with her rental property - she cannot also claim the expense at the work-related car expenses label (D1) on her tax return.

If she wants to make a separate work-related car expenses claim, the total distance she travelled on income producing activities (including rental property travel expenses) cannot exceed 5,000 kilometres when using the cents per kilometre method.

End of example

See also:

Information about the methods for working out car expenses, see How do you work out car expenses?

    Last modified: 05 Jul 2016QC 22093