Quantity surveyors are tertiary qualified professionals who inspect, assess, evaluate, and advise on all matters that influence a property’s tax depreciation. Managing all building costs, quantity surveyors will work with architects, engineers, and contractors to ensure that projects are built within budget and on time.

Quantity surveyors use mathematics, economics, and construction knowledge to estimate the costs of materials, labour, and equipment for a project. Upon completion of the project or across existing, older properties, quantity surveyors may also specialise in tax depreciation and depreciation of assets.

The Australian Tax Office (ATO) recognises qualified quantity surveyors as one of the few professions with the skills and qualifications required to calculate the cost of items for the purpose of depreciation. Here at Property Returns, we specialise primarily in tax depreciation; wherein our experienced, knowledgeable, and skilled quantity surveyors deliver tax depreciation schedules across Australia.

If you are interested in a career in quantity surveying, or you’re considering engaging the services of a quantity surveyor, then read on to find out more about what this profession entails.

What is a quantity surveyor?

Quantity surveyors are responsible for providing accurate and insightful cost advice throughout the planning and building phases of a construction project. Specialist quantity surveyors are responsible for assessing the depreciable assets of a property to support tax deduction claims.

Generally, quantity surveyors are involved in the tendering process and can also be responsible for project management and cost control.

Quantity surveyors typically have a degree in quantity surveying or a related discipline, and many are chartered with professional bodies which are determined on a state-by-state basis in Australia.

What does a quantity surveyor do?

Quantity surveyors working for the client will typically be responsible for ensuring that the project stays within budget, and that any changes to the scope of work are properly documented and approved. Those working for the main contractor will usually be responsible for preparing tenders and overseeing the subcontractors. Specialist quantity surveyors may be employed to provide expert advice on specific aspects of the project, such as risk management or value engineering.

Quantity surveyors typically use software programs to help them with their work, and many also use drones or other technology to collect data about construction sites. They may also be involved in dispute resolution, either acting as an expert witness in court cases or mediating between parties to try and reach an agreement.

The role of a quantity surveyor is essential to the successful delivery of any construction project. Their expertise can save clients’ money, ensure that projects stay on track, and resolve disputes before they escalate.

For tax depreciation, a specialist quantity surveyor will document and calculate all assets within a property to determine the depreciable value. This includes measuring rooms, recording an asset’s qualities, photographing renovations, and using a laser measurer to help the property owner to maximise their tax deductions. This information is all compiled together to prepare a tax depreciations schedule that will outline the deductions that may be claimed at the end of each financial year.

what is a quantity surveyor report?

Do I need a quantity surveyor?

There’s no easy answer to this question. In terms of needing a quantity surveyor for your construction project, that depends on a number of factors, including the size and scope of your project, your budget, and your level of experience.

If you’re undertaking a small project, or you’re confident in your ability to manage costs yourself, then you may not need to hire a quantity surveyor. However, if your project is large or complex, or you’re unsure about how to control costs, then it may be worth bringing in professional help.

A quantity surveyor can provide valuable advice and support throughout your project. They can help you to understand the cost implications of different choices, and they can assist with the tendering process and contract negotiation. They can also provide ongoing support during the construction phase, ensuring that costs stay on track.

If you’re looking to maximise your returns on your existing property, then yes, you will need to engage with a quantity surveyor for a tax depreciation schedule. Only a tax depreciation specialist can be used for the detailed knowledge and understanding of all current ATO Tax Rulings that will relate to depreciation and your property.

If you’re thinking about hiring a specialist quantity surveyor, the best place to start is by getting in touch with your local quantity surveyor like Property Returns.

What is a quantity surveyor report?

A quantity surveyor report is a detailed document that outlines the cost of a construction project. The report includes an itemised list of materials, labour, and other expenses associated with the project. The quantity surveyor report is used by contractors and developers to estimate the cost of a project and determine if it is feasible. It is also used by lenders to assess the risk of a loan for a construction project.

The quantity surveyor report is an important cog in cost control in the construction industry. It helps contractors and developers estimate the cost of a project, and lenders assess the risk of a loan for a construction project. The report includes an itemised list of materials, labour, and other expenses associated with the project. This information is used to determine if a project is feasible and to estimate the loan amount that a lender is willing to provide.

Why use a specialist quantity surveyor?

Whether you’re a property investor with a large portfolio or this is your first property purchase, it pays to rely on a specialist quantity surveyor to ensure you’re well equipped for tax time. Some of the main reasons that our clients seek a tax depreciation schedule from Property Returns include claiming more deductions, paying less tax overall, and seeing a greater return on investment for their property. Furthermore, all information is prepared in full compliance with ATO regulations and in a way that accountants can easily incorporate the schedule into an income tax assessment.

If you require a tax depreciation schedule for your commercial or investment property, you’ll need to engage a quantity surveying expert to complete the tax depreciation schedule for you. Quantity surveyors are one of the select few professions qualified to complete tax depreciation schedules for investment properties under ATO taxation ruling 97/25.

How can quantity surveyors estimate project costs?

Quantity surveyors are one of the few professionals recognised by the ATO to have the appropriate construction costing skills to estimate the cost of a building and its assets for the purposes of depreciation.

There are a number of ways that quantity surveyors can estimate project costs. One common method is to use what is known as the ‘bill of quantities’ approach. This involves taking an inventory of all the materials and labour required for the project, and then pricing those items out in order to come up with an estimated cost.

Another popular method is known as the ‘unit price’ approach. In this case, the quantity surveyor will come up with an estimated cost per unit of material or labour required. This can be helpful in situations where the exact number of materials or labour needed is not known in advance.

quantity surveyor estimating costs

Either approach, it is important for the quantity surveyor to have a good understanding of the project in question, as well as the current market prices for materials and labour. With this information, they should be able to provide a fairly accurate estimate of the project’s total cost.

Final thoughts

The role of a quantity surveyor is critical in ensuring the successful delivery of construction projects. They are responsible for providing accurate cost estimates, overseeing procurement, and managing contracts. Their skills and expertise are essential in ensuring that projects are completed on time and within budget.

As the construction industry continues to grow, the demand for qualified quantity surveyors is likely to increase. Similarly, as you grow your investment portfolio, it makes sense to have a specialist quantity surveyor on-side that you can trust to maximise your tax deductions and see a greater return on your property investment. For more information on getting a tax depreciation schedule for your property, get in touch with Property Returns today.