Expenses and tax relief for smaller businesses

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Do you have a smaller business? Then you should ensure that you are taking advantage of expenses and tax relief that you are legally entitled to! Of course, much of the time these special perks for self-employed people are not advertised, but there is no need to worry as we have here a list of the top small business tax deductions and expenses that you can claim from home expenses to personalised number plates, which will put some extra pennies back into your account.

Claiming Back on Your Home

If you are self-employed, it is likely that you sometimes have to work from home. Luckily for you, what you may not already know is that you can actually claim some money back here. When you are working from home, tax payers are entitled to claim back an appropriate proportion of their household bills as a business expense. A few examples here that you could claim back include lighting, heating and even your council tax. The proportion that you can receive back normally is based on how many rooms you have in your home and this excludes toilets, kitchens, hallways and bathrooms.

Claiming Back for Family Members

Although there are not many tax and expense benefits when it comes to your family, you can claim deductions if your family supports your business. If someone in your family does work for you and you pay them a salary, then this can be claimed back as a business expense. What’s more, if this member of family who works for you does not have another job, then they will most likely enjoy their salary tax free due to the income tax personal allowance and the national insurance threshold. There are also some great benefits if you are self-employed for childcare costs. You can use this as a tax deduction and claim some cash back.

Claiming Back on Your Car

If you are self-employed and own your own small business, then you are entitled to some very generous tax benefits in relation to your car. Both self-employed and business partners can claim back a percentage of their car’s running costs and this can include thing such as repairs and maintenance, road tax, petrol and insurance. If you are a car owner, then you will already know that this can quickly add up! This is all based on your annual business mileage, however, it is worth noting that while you are able to claim capital allowances on the car, you are not allowed to claim back your regular home to work commute. When you purchase a new car, you will be able to enjoy a full year’s allowance in the year in which you purchased it and this still counts even when the car is purchased on the last day of the accounting time frame. Changing your car regularly makes sense when you have your own small business as you can get a balancing allowance when you sell your old car. Other allowable business expenses for your car if you own a small business include parking, hire charges, any other mode of transport fares, hotel room and any meals on overnight business trips.

What’s also great about having your own small business is that you can also claim back tax if you decide to get a private registration plate!

A private plate can be a costly expense depending on which personal plate you want to go with as some personalised registrations are in high-demand and will be more expensive than other personalised car registrations. While capital allowances are only eligible for cars and vans, your personalised plate is classed as an intangible asset. With intangible assets, the tax relief that you can receive for them is normally spread out over the number of years that the asset will be useful in your business. This can be anywhere from between five to twenty years. So, if you own a business and you put a private number plate on the front of your car, then you can enjoy the benefit in kind equal to 20% of the value of the purchase price of the private car registration every year.

So, if you have always wanted to have your very own personal car registration, now is the time to do so as a small business owner and you can purchase one today from companies such as British Car Registrations who have a number plate search tool on their homepage. This will enable you to check whether the plate you desire is available.

As we briefly just mentioned, it is not only your car that you can claim back expenses on, it is also any business travel and subsistence. For example, if your work requires you to go abroad for a business trip and stay there overnight or for a few days, then you should be able to get some benefits. Instead of taking the cheapest flight and trudging into the city that you are visiting by train, you can instead afford to spend a little bit extra. Why not upgrade your flight and grab a taxi into the city centre instead? Here, all of your travel and subsistence costs will be fully allowable, giving you the choice to spend more if you so do wish too. This is the perfect opportunity to treat yourself to a a lovely trip!

Claim Back on Your Telephone

As a small business owner, no doubt you are constantly on the phone speaking with existing and potentially new clients. This can rack up quite quickly but the good news for small business owners is that this is tax deductible! If you are self-employed or are a business partner, you can claim back the cost of business calls on home phones and mobiles plus line rental can be claimed too if it is a line only used for business calls. Furthermore, any shareholders or directors may claim back a reimbursement on any cost of business calls that are made from their home phones. Last, but not least, with telephones a company can also buy staff a mobile phone and not have any Benefit in Kind arising from this.

Contributing to Your Pension

Aa a small business owner, it is important that you are also contributing to your pension. Small business owners can claim back tax relief for their pension contributions as long as they are within the contributions limits.  You can either make these pension contributions personally, as a partner or as a contribution made on behalf of the company. This can also extend to any family members who work for your company.

Sprucing Up Your Office

If you have ever had to decorate an entire office, you know that this can be a very costly affair. But, did you know that you can the cost of decorating your business office is allowable? Anything that is sued in your office to decorate it, even antiques and paintings, are allowable as long as they are seen by your customers or the general public. However, it is worth noting that you will need to make a case for this expenditure and any large items only get relief under the capital allowances system.

Take advantage of these tax expenses and relief for small businesses today and see how much you can save!