Monthly Archives: September 2013

Help to BuyUnder the first phase of the Help to Buy scheme, launched in April, the government will give homebuyers in England equity loans of up to 20% of the price of a new property worth up to £600,000.

Homebuyers need to contribute at least 5% of the property price as a deposit, with a 75% mortgage to cover the rest.

Under the second phase of Help to Buy, which had been due to launch in January, the government will underwrite 15% of the value of a mortgage, allowing people to buy properties with a 5% deposit.

It will apply to all home purchases in the UK of up to £600,000.

Applications for loans from the scheme will now be brought forward to the week beginning 7 October but the loans will not be paid out until 1 January. Anyone hoping to complete on their home purchase using the second phase of Help to Buy before 2014 will not be able to.

 

HMRCHMRC targets landlords over unpaid tax

HM Revenue and Customs is giving landlords who have not declared all of their rental income to the taxman a chance to come forward and ‘put their tax affairs in order’.

 

HMRC has estimated that up to 1.5 million residential property landlords may be underpaying up to £500m in UK tax every year.

Under HMRC’s new Let Property Campaign, landlords who may owe tax – whether through misunderstanding the rules or deliberate evasion – can come forward and tell HMRC about any unpaid tax on rents, and pay what they owe, including any penalties and interest due.

The campaign is open to all residential property landlords – from those that have multiple properties, to single rentals, and from specialist landlords such as student or workforce rentals, to holiday lettings.

Marian Wilson, head of HMRC Campaigns, said: “All rent from letting out a residential property or holiday home has to be declared for income tax purposes. Telling us is simple and straightforward.

“We appreciate some people will have made honest mistakes, and some may not be fully aware that the rent from a property is taxable, and that is why it always makes sense to talk to us so we can help. It is always cheaper to come forward voluntarily and pay the tax you owe, rather than wait for HMRC to come calling.

“Telling HMRC about your tax liabilities is simple and straightforward, and help, advice and support are available. The message for all landlords owing tax is simple – it is better to come to us before we come to you.”

HMRC will use information it holds about property rental in the UK and abroad, along with information already held on HMRC‘s digital intelligence system Connect, to identify people who have not paid what they owe. For those that fail to come forward, higher penalties – or even criminal prosecution – could follow.

HMRC also said it will be working with a variety of bodies over the next few months to develop tools and guidance to support landlords of all types and help them get their affairs up to date.

For more details, visit HMRC’s website.

More help is available for landlords by calling HMRC’s Let Property Campaign Hotline on 03000 514 479, between 9am and 5pm, Monday to Friday

 

TestimonialKevin and Vanessa managed our mortgage from beginning to completion in the most timely way. They were the most efficient party working on our purchase, and made themselves available for communication and were highly proactive in meeting our needs. Park Gate provided us with an assuring experience and went above and beyond our expectations. We will definitely be turning to them for financial advisory needs in the future!

 

BOEThe Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) has voted to keep interest rates on hold at 0.5%.

It has kept the key borrowing rate at that level since March 2009.

The MPC also said it would make no change to the £375bn of monetary stimulus it is providing through its quantitative easing (QE) programme.

Last month, BoE governor Mark Carney said the central bank would not consider raising interest rates until the unemployment rate fell below 7%.

That announcement is part of Mr Carney’s policy of giving forward guidance.

The idea is to create more certainty for businesses and individuals about the course of interest rates, which may encourage borrowing and investment.

He forecast that it would take about three years for unemployment to reach his target.