HMRC Urges 'Accidental' Landlords To Pay Tax

AFS Team·20 March 2019·4 min read
HMRC Urges 'Accidental' Landlords To Pay Tax

HMRC Urges 'Accidental' Landlords To Pay Tax

A campaign launched by HM Revenue and Customs aimed at accidental landlords urging them to pay tax might be failing, one accountancy firm says.

The Let Property Campaign was launched in 2013 to encourage landlords to pay unpaid tax on rents they may have received from their property.

However, a Freedom of Information request has found that less than 3% of those accidental landlords may have come forward.

The findings from accountants Saffery Champness found that 35,099 people made a voluntary disclosure - around 2.3% of the 1.5 million landlords that HMRC believes are either failing to pay or underpaying tax.

The campaign was launched with the aim of raising the £500 million that HMRC says hasn't been paid but, so far, just £85.4 million has been paid in tax.

Those owing tax are likely to be accidental landlords

HMRC says that a large number of those who are owing tax are likely to be accidental landlords who are renting out homes they cannot sell.

The number of accidental landlords has rocketed with a slowing property market and the struggle to find buyers.

In December, real estate firm Hamptons International said that in 2018, 400,000 people were letting out their property because they were unable to sell them.

A spokesman for Saffery Champness said: "There are clearly more landlords with additional tax to pay who are yet to come forward, according to HMRC. If that's the case, then they should contact the taxman."

Landlords must complete a tax return should their rental income exceed £2,500 per year.

An HMRC spokeswoman said: "As a landlord with income that is undisclosed you must tell HMRC about and unpaid tax and you will have 90 days to calculate and then pay it."

Student tenant housing gripes revealed

Meanwhile, a survey has revealed the housing gripes from student tenants in the UK.

The findings reveal that one in three students have gone without running water or heating in their property, in a list of the 10 biggest worries.

The number one concern is noisy housemates and students also worry about housing costs when living away from home.

Also, students worry about the up-front costs, including fees and the deposit plus having a month's rent to pay in advance, which adds up to £970 on average.

The average rent being paid by students is £125 a week with parents contributing £44.