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Help is at hand for landlords filing tax returns

Tuesday 08 January 2019

Filing an annual tax return is a necessary task for every self-employed person, including buy-to-let landlords, with the 31 January deadline for the 2017/18 self assessment tax return approaching.

Whether you have just started out as a buy-to-let landlord or you are an established property investor, there is much to consider from a financial point of view.

This is the first tax return where landlords will begin to feel the bite of the Section 24 tax changes. The percentage of finance costs (mortgage interest, loan interest, overdraft interest) that can be deducted as an expense from income has dropped from 100% to 75%. Landlords will therefore be declaring higher net profits from their property income. That could potentially start to push some into a higher personal tax bracket…

It will be a flavour for landlords of what’s to come,- and how it will impact their profit - as the figure decreases again next year to 50% of costs that can be deducted, then to 25%, and 0% for 2020.

Around 10 million people must complete a self-assessment tax form every year, typically because they are self-employed, run their own business or have untaxed income or capital gains, such as from a buy-to-let property, a trust or investment portfolio.

Tax returns shouldn’t have to require an accountant, but if you are worried about going it alone (particularly in view of the changes, you may wish to check out HMRC's 'help and support for landlords'.

HMRC has also added online tax return help for landlords to their online series of help and support webinars.

This webinar is for landlords of UK residential property. The first part is about allowable deductions and expenses, and new topics such as using Cash Basis, mileage rates and finance costs. The second part covers completing the property section of the Self Assessment tax return.

You can ask questions using the on-screen text box, but HMRC can't check your records or discuss anything confidential.

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