HMRC send letters to 40,000 landlords

Following the introduction of the Let Property Disclosure Campaign, HMRC have stepped up their scrutiny of landlords and their income tax affairs.

Over the next 4 months, HMRC intend to send letters to 40,000 landlords whom they believe are not making a full disclosure of the income they receive from letting a property.HMRC-landlords-logo

The letters will ask landlords to contact them to bring their tax up to date or risk a large fine or detailed, criminal investigation.

As at the start of August, 5000 letters have been sent which gives a 30 day timescale in which to respond.

So how can they find our if you own a property?

HMRC are using more and more sophisticated techniques and using more data sources at its disposal. For example,  they have recently written to lettings agents requiring them to provide a list of landlords on their books, they are monitoring Housing Benefit payments and even using social media to identify any adverts for properties for rent.

It is estimated that fewer than 500,000 taxpayers are registered with HMRC as owning second properties, whereas they believe that there are nearer to 1.5 million people who own a property which is not their main residence.

In October 2013, HMRC launched the Let Property Campaign which gave landlords the opportunity to bring their tax affairs up to date by coming forward and providing details of their income, given that as of today, 14th August 2014, we haven’t had closure letters for submissions we have made on behalf of clients over 6 months ago, and HMRC don’t have any timescales as to when we will receive them, it would appear that more people have come forward than they first thought would.

If you would like some more information, or are a landlord and want help with your tax, we have helped many clients in bringing their tax affairs up to date with the minimum hassle possible. Simply, get in touch for a free, confidential chat.