Get organised and cut costs ahead of the new tax year

Mon 19 Mar 2018

With the new tax year set to begin on 6th April, now is the perfect time for landlords to carry out a spring clean of your finances and ensure you make the most of any allowances in the next 12 months.

It might not be the most tempting of tasks this spring, but the benefits of doing so can be immense, including saving time and professional fees both in the new tax year and beyond.

Tax relief can be claimed against a number of items, so make sure you are up to speed with all of them. They include letting agents’ fees, buildings and contents insurance, accountants’ fees, ground rent and service charges, utility bills, maintenance and repairs, council tax and interest on property loans. It is always worth consulting an accountant if you are unsure about your allowances and whether you are making full use of them.

As for your spring clean, keeping a file with all relevant paperwork is a good starting point as this will help you to work out your tax return at the end of the year. Any documents relating to your property and your ownership of it should be maintained indefinitely, while financial paperwork should be kept for six years.

HMRC takes the matter of accurate financial information extremely seriously so you must have all data available to you at the end of the year, including mortgage statements, bank statements, rental income records, invoices for repairs and maintenance and details of other income.

To complete an effective spring clean follow these steps:

• Maintain relevant paperwork; shred all out-of-date documents

• Keep tax records for the last seven years

• Store all passbooks, share certificates and deeds safely

• Record usernames and passwords for your digital assets

It is also worth noting that landlords will be among the first people required to submit all tax returns digitally, with this rule set to come into effect in April 2020.

Leaders can make your tax return remarkably simple through our Annual Self-Assessment Tax Service. This is designed to remove all the stress and frustration typically associated with tax returns, allowing you to put your feet up and submit the relevant details in next to no time.

Our service works by generating a report of your income and expenditure for each property, providing you with all the figures you need to submit your tax return with ease. It costs just £35 plus VAT per property and can save hours of calculations and confusion.

Contact your local branch to sign up to the service and allow us to take the strain ahead of the next tax return deadline.