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HMRC’s Let Property Campaign has been in operation since September 2013. At the time of its launch, HMRC estimated up to 1.5 million landlords were undeclaring rental income to the tune of a combined £500m per annum. 

The scheme was meant to run for just a year-and-a-half but has remained active for a decade. In the last 12 months, HMRC discovered another 5,429 landlords had failed to declare all their rental income in self-assessment tax returns. 

In total, HMRC managed to reclaim an additional £33m in undeclared income tax, amounting to an average of £6,078 per landlord. That’s a 73% year-on-year rise of £19.3m in 2021/22. 

What does the Let Property campaign entail? 

Under the terms of the scheme, HMRC is permitted to reclaim up to 20 years of undeclared rental income and dish out fines worth up to 100% of the outstanding tax or even 200% for offshore irregularities, in certain cases. HMRC is also within its rights to file for criminal prosecution, should it deem necessary. 

Those found to have deliberately evaded paying income tax on their rental income unsurprisingly receive the harshest of penalties. 

Conversely, landlords deemed to have made genuine errors with their accounting are given more lenient fines. In addition, HMRC will only reclaim up to six years of undeclared income tax in less serious cases. 

An HMRC spokesperson confirmed the renewed focus of its Let Property campaign now that the worst of the Covid-19 pandemic appears to be over. 

“The Let Property Campaign is an opportunity for landlords who owe tax through letting out residential property, in the UK or abroad, to get up to date with their tax affairs in a simple, straightforward way and take advantage of the best possible terms. 

“During the Covid-19 pandemic, resources were moved to support the wider government’s priorities at the time, which resulted in a temporary reduction in the number of disclosures made.” 

We can work with you to optimise your tax position across your rental portfolio 

First and foremost, if you believe you have rental income that’s undeclared to HMRC, it’s better to voluntarily declare it now than to wait and be caught by the taxman. We can help you with your disclosure within the Let Property Campaign.  

Once a disclosure has been made, you’ll receive a 90-day window to calculate the undeclared income and pay what you owe. Our professional and experienced accountants can support you through this process. 

At TaxAssist Accountants, we can help you to claim all the reliefs and expenses you’re entitled to, ensuring you pay the correct amount of income tax.  

Arrange a free initial consultation into your rental property portfolio with our team today on 0800 0523 555 or drop us a line using our online enquiry form

Date published 14 Jun 2023

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