Are you getting any return on your savings?
Whilst the bank base rate in February was left untouched (there were rumours of a cut), savings rates are falling. As an example, for a long time, the Santander 123 account offered a reasonable rate of interest – 3% at one time on balances up to £20,000. However, this fell to 1.5% in 2016 and falls to 1% in May 2020. It also offered cashback on certain payments from the account, but this is also capped from May. There is also a £5 per month charge on the account. You need to do some sums to see if it is still worthwhile.
Cash ISAs also need looking at. Interest rates of 0.20% or 0.10% are not uncommon. The advantage of cash ISAs was that the interest was tax free. However, with changes to tax laws, a basic rate taxpayer can have the first £1,000 interest per annum taxed at 0% (£500 for a 40% taxpayer).
Time to review your accounts!
Disposing of property – make sure you tell us immediately!
The capital gains tax (CGT) rules change from April 2020 and there are penalties for late disclosure!
Final period exemption – when letting a property you own and in which you have previously lived, the last 18 months was not liable to CGT even if you were not living there at the time. This is being dropped to 9 months, so care is needed if you buy a new property before selling the old one.
There was up to £80,000 of “lettings relief” available against a capital gain where a property which was a main residence at some time but had been let out. This is changing so that the lettings relief is only available where the occupation is shared with a tenant at the same time – reducing the scope dramatically.
The deadline for paying the tax has also changed.
Old rules – It used to be paid on 31 January after the end of the tax year of disposal e.g. sell a property 30 April 2019, in the tax year 2019/20, and pay any CGT on 31 January 2021.
New rules – There is now a 30-day window after the completion of the property disposal in which to file a return and calculate and make payment of capital gains tax. This is a minefield in itself, as capital gains tax can only be accurately quantified after the end of a tax year, so the tax will be a provisional “estimate” based on known circumstances at the time.
It is essential that you let us know immediately you are thinking of selling or do indeed sell any property.
Directors’ salaries – 2020/21 tax year
With the new tax year starting on 6 April, the National Insurance bands change, and therefore the rates of pay to directors will also change. Generally, a modest “salary” and dividends are used to extract funds from a company. However, there are always exceptions and reasons why this strategy is not used. Therefore, we will be considering your tax position and contacting you direct to advise the rates to be paid from April.
PPI claims – don’t forget to declare the interest
Many thousands have successfully claimed and received refunds of payment protection insurance (PPI). Read the documentation carefully and you will see that the PPI settlement includes interest calculated at eight percent on the refunded premiums. Some banks deduct 20% tax from the interest paid, but other lenders do not.
This interest should be declared on your tax return. There may be tax to pay on this interest depending on when you received it and the level of other interest received in the same year. But it is not all bad news. Depending on your circumstances, any tax deducted from the interest may be repayable to you!
We will be pleased to meet with you and review your tax position.
Selling on Ebay or Amazon, via PayPal, Etsy or other platforms? Make sure you account for Income tax and VAT correctly!
Many people sell online – but are you declaring the income to HMRC? And have you registered for VAT if your turnover warrants this?
HMRC are taking a keen interest in those selling through online platforms, and there are potential penalties for failing to declare such income.
For VAT purposes, your “turnover” is not what you receive into your bank account. From the sale proceeds of an item, the platforms deduct listing fees, selling fees, and other miscellaneous charges. So, whilst you might receive £95, your “sales” are £100, and expenses are £5. Pay VAT on the £95 received and you have under-declared.
Many of the platforms can link direct to accounting software and bring in the sales and expenses separately so that you can deal with these sales correctly.
Contact us now if you think you may possibly have some “issues”.
At Glover Stanbury, all of our services are designed to add significant value to your business and personal wealth. read more