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bigduckontax, Accountant
Category: Tax
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Hi, I have been letting a house since 2008 and want to make

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Hi, I have been letting a house since 2008 and want to make a declaration against the let property campaign. I no financial experience and the house is only let as I couldn't sell it when I had to relocate for work. Can you advise on my first steps, should I contact an accountant before making contact with HMRC?
Hello, I'm Keith and happy to help you with your question.
I am sorry to be obtuse, but I don't quite get the gist of your question. However, before I can move forward, have you been declaring the rental to HMRC on your annual self assessment tax return?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Hi Keith,
I'm sorry if the question was a bit vague. No, I haven't been doing that, I'm not a professional landlord- a letting agency handles the let on a home that used to be my full time home. It never occurred to me I had to declare it,. I'm sorry that makes me sound stupid but I'm just terrified that I let it slide for so long and I hear about the let property campaign and wanted to make it right.
Right, you must make your peace with HMRC and hope that they do not impose penalties on you for non declaration. You are required to self assess if you are in receipt of income which has not been taxed. You cannot rely on HMRC to send out a form for completion. Blame your letting agent for not telling you; might work on the other hand it might not, don't count on it.
You must write to your tax office telling them what has happened and declaring income tax year by tax year. The following items, according to Which, can be deducted from rentals:
'Allowable expenses a landlord can claim
The most common types of expenses you can deduct are:
Water rates, council tax, gas and electricity
Maintenance and repairs to the property (but not improvements)
Contents insurance
Interest on a mortgage to buy the property
Costs of services, including the wages of gardeners and cleaners
Letting agents fees
Legal fees for lets of a year or less, or for renewing a lease of less than 50 years
Accountant’s fees
Rents, ground rents and service charges
Direct costs such as phone calls, stationery and advertising for new tenants
The expense should be incurred wholly and exclusively as a result of renting out your property.'
It looks as though you can even claim the Just Answer fee as an Accountant's fee! If you find you have made a loss in a tax year then that loss can be carried forward to future years to offset rental income. You cannot offset losses against your employment income.
I do hope I have shed some light on your problem for you.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Hi Keith,
Thanks for your answer, I was wondering if you had any more information on the Let Property Campaign declaration. I'm sorry if I'm sounding a little clueless but I've made a mistake and want to make it right as son as I can. I read about the campaign on the website and thought it sounded like what I should do.
Yes, this is HMRC trying to sort out the tax evaders from the forgetful! You may use it providing:
'Who can do this
You can report previously undisclosed taxes on rental income to HMRC under the Let Property Campaign if you’re an individual landlord renting out residential property.
This includes you if you’re:
Renting out a single property
Renting out multiple properties
A specialist landlord, eg student or workforce rentals
Renting out a room in your main home for more than £4,250 a year or £2,125 a year if letting the property jointly, ie above the Rent a Room Scheme threshold
Living abroad and renting out a property in the UK
Living in the UK and renting a property abroad
Renting out a holiday home even if you use it yourself
You can’t use this scheme to declare undisclosed income if you’re a company or a trust renting out residential property or if you’re renting out commercial property.'
I would recommend that you take advantage of this scheme. The web site Let Property Campaign gives full details of the process and full details. They even have Freephone numbers!
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Hi Keith,
Thanks for the advice, I was planning to use the scheme bit I just didn't know what to do or how to start without making things worse- I've just been really terrified since I realised.
Are the free phones for advice? Will they help talk an idiot layman through or do you recommend I get an accountant for the job?
You should with the data I have given you be able to do it yourself. Yes, the Let Property Campaign does have 0300 numbers. I would always be inclined to not give details over the phone, there is always the chance of confusion in verbal communications. Try to keep everything in writing.
bigduckontax and other Tax Specialists are ready to help you
Thank you for your excellent support.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Thankyou for your help and information, you're reassurance has made a big difference.
Delighted to have been of assistance. Keep your fingers crossed, not all HMRC staff are ogres!