Our Spotlight series highlights the careers and lives of tax professionals across the globe. This week’s spotlight is on Garreth Collard, a property accountant who returned to accounting over a decade ago, specializing in rental investment property. Collard, based out of Auckland, New Zealand, is fluent in English, Spanish, and Portuguese, and, he jokes, “half-fluent” in Italian and Chinese (Mandarin).
What’s your official title, and what does it mean? Managing Director. I manage the non-practice side of the business, such as advice, client relations, and money.
Free time: book, audiobook, or podcast? Book.
Tax is a huge subject. What’s your area of special interest? Residential property taxation. I have specialized in this for about eight years now.
What’s the last movie or show that you watched and loved (DVD, Netflix, or in the theater)? “The Secret Life of Walter Mitty” on Disney+ starring Ben Stiller. It was surprisingly interesting, with lots of unexpected plot turns and a great ending.
Go to pick-me-up: Coffee or tea? Coffee.
What’s the best tax or financial advice that anyone ever gave you? “If you are paying GST (VAT), don’t complain. That means you are making money.” - Dad
If you weren’t working in the tax profession, what would your dream job be? Travel writer.
If you had the opportunity to make one change in the tax world—an extra credit, a disallowed deduction, whatever—what would it be? Reinstate 100% interest deductions on existing rental property
Favorite food, snack, or candy during tax season or other busy time? Cashew nuts.
What tax news or move made the most impact on your practice or clients this past year? The (New Zealand) Prime Minister’s announcements on March 23 of this year, removing the ability to deduct interest on existing rental property loans.
If you received a big tax refund check right now, what would you do with it? That ain’t gonna happen, but I would pay off some of the mortgage on our home when the loans come up for renewal.
You can find Collard on LinkedIn.
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