At HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC), we’re committed to helping you by making it quicker, easier and simpler to manage your tax obligations.

If you’re running a small business or are thinking about setting one up, have a look at our top tips for tax.

 

  • When you start to advertise or have your first customer, you are classed as trading and will have to register with us. This should be done within six months of the end of the tax year – so by 6 October – but do it sooner in case you forget!

 

  • Registering with us online means you can do much of your tax-related business over the internet, such as your Self Assessment. It also allows you to register for any other business taxes like VAT. VAT becomes payable once the turnover of taxable goods and services you provide goes over the 'VAT registration threshold' – which is £81,000.

 

  • Developing a good record system will not only help you run your business efficiently, but also make it much easier for you to fill in your Self Assessment tax return – we have smartphone apps that can help with this.

 

  • If you are a sole trader or a business partnership, there is a simpler way of calculating business expenses: Expenses relating to your vehicle(s), working from home or living in your business premises can be calculated using flat rates instead of working out your actual business costs under our ‘simplified expenses scheme’.

 

  • You can use our ‘cash basis accounting’ method to help simplify your tax assessment and therefore reduce your admin. With this method you only count the money you’ve actually received in a tax year – any money you’re owed isn’t counted until you receive it.

HMRC offers a range of help and support to suit different learning styles. You can sign up for business advice emails and also use a wealth of webinars, e-learning and ‘bite-sized’ YouTube videos which provide detail on the subjects covered here and more – www.hmrc.gov.uk/startingup/help-support.htm