Let Property Campaign – How to Get Your Tax Affairs Up to Date
Landlords who rent residential properties, whether in the UK or abroad, must declare their rental income and pay applicable taxes on it.
The Let Property Campaign is an established disclosure initiative operated by HMRC to assist landlords in keeping their tax affairs up to date in a straightforward and often financially beneficial manner. However, there are certain requirements you must abide by in order to maximize the advantages of this scheme.
What is the Let Property Campaign?
HMRC’s Let Property Campaign is a voluntary disclosure initiative launched in 2013 to assist residential landlords who owe tax on rental income from property both domestically and abroad to bring their tax affairs up to date.
There are various reasons a landlord might fail to report their letting income on their tax return, from accidental failure to deliberate neglect.
Making a disclosure as soon as possible is critical to reduce the likelihood of being audited or facing higher penalties. Voluntary disclosure also shows that the landlord takes their tax obligations seriously.
HMRC uses the quality of a disclosure when deciding whether or not to launch either civil or criminal investigations into tax fraud. A full and unprompted disclosure of liabilities suggests that the money wasn’t obtained through serious organised crime activity, potentially impacting how much penalty they are willing to charge.
Who is eligible for the Let Property Campaign?
If you rent residential property in the UK or abroad, HMRC requires notification of any income that hasn’t been declared. This includes rental profits (large and small), losses – regardless of whether you do it yourself or use a company/trust to handle it for you.
The Let Property Campaign is open to all landlords who own one or multiple properties. This includes specialist landlords with student or workforce lettings, holiday lettings and those living in the UK but renting out properties abroad.
However, if you wish to report income for a company or trust, this scheme is not suitable.
It is imperative not to ignore any letters you receive from HMRC seeking information about your property income. Neglecting to respond can result in higher penalties and may even lead to an official investigation into your tax affairs by HMRC. Voluntary disclosure can be an effective way of resolving matters before they get that far.
What are the benefits of the Let Property Campaign?
The Let Property Campaign offers you a chance to bring your tax affairs up to date if you’re a residential landlord who earns income from renting out property in the UK or abroad but has not declared it previously. It provides an easy solution for getting everything straight with HMRC on more favorable terms than usual.
The advantages of the Let Property Campaign are numerous and include potential to reduce or avoid fines and penalties for non-compliance that could be substantial. Furthermore, it helps accidental landlords understand their tax obligations better, leading them to improve financial management skillsets and guarantee future compliance with tax laws.
However, if you make a disclosure in the Let Property Campaign, be aware that HMRC will conduct compliance checks and inquiries before accepting your offer. As such, it is important to always cooperate fully with HMRC in order to maximize the potential success of your disclosure while reducing any higher penalties that could occur.
How can I take advantage of the Let Property Campaign?
If you are a landlord with undeclared rental income on residential properties, the Let Property Campaign could be the ideal solution to get your tax affairs in order. Operated by HM Revenue & Customs, this campaign provides the best terms available so that all of your returns are accurate and current.
Landlords who take advantage of this campaign may be eligible for a letter from HMRC, known as a ‘nudge letter’, reminding them to declare their rental income and pay any outstanding taxes.
The Let Property Campaign is an excellent way to stay current on your tax affairs and prevent large fines or investigations from HMRC. However, it should be noted that the campaign does not apply to all cases, and there may be reasons why disclosing outside the scheme might be preferable.
Disclosing outside of the Let Property Campaign may be preferable because it reduces waiting time for HMRC to investigate your case and could help minimize any potential penalties that may apply.