HMRC 'Side Hustle' Tax: What it means for you

Discover the ins and outs of HMRC's 'Side Hustle' tax regulations in the UK with our comprehensive guide. From understanding your tax obligations to maximising deductions and seeking professional advice, this blog explores what it means for individuals engaged in freelance work, gig economy jobs, or running small businesses on the side. Stay informed and compliant to ensure a smooth financial journey while pursuing your passions.

Bex

2/19/20242 min read

two clear plastic organizers
two clear plastic organizers

HMRC 'Side Hustle' Tax: What it Means for You

In an age where the side hustles have become increasingly popular, the landscape of taxation is evolving alongside it. With the rise of platforms like Etsy, Vinted and eBay enabling individuals to earn extra income outside of their traditional employment, tax authorities are paying closer attention to these activities. In the United Kingdom, HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) has introduced measures to ensure that income generated from side hustles is properly accounted for and taxed. So, what exactly does this mean for you as someone engaged in a side hustle?

Understanding HMRC's Approach

HMRC's stance is clear: any income earned, regardless of its source or frequency, is subject to taxation. This includes earnings from side businesses, freelance work, rental properties, or any other form of self-employment. Even if your side hustle is just a small venture, HMRC expects you to declare your income and pay taxes accordingly.

The Importance of Record Keeping

One of the key aspects of managing your side hustle tax obligations is keeping meticulous records of your income and expenses. This includes invoices, receipts, bank statements, and any other relevant documentation. By maintaining accurate records, you'll not only ensure compliance with HMRC regulations but also make the tax filing process much smoother and less stressful.

Registering for Self-Assessment

If your side hustle income exceeds a certain threshold, currently £1,000 turnover per year, you'll likely need to register for self-assessment with HMRC. This process involves declaring your income, calculating your tax liability, and submitting an annual tax return. It's essential to stay on top of deadlines and fulfill your obligations to avoid penalties and fines. The £1,000 turnover means your gross sales figure, before selling fees, repairs costs or purchases are taking into account. You will still be taxed on your profits only.

Understanding Tax Deductions

The good news is that running a side hustle also comes with certain tax benefits. HMRC allows you to deduct legitimate business expenses from your taxable income, reducing your overall tax liability. These expenses may include equipment purchases, travel costs, marketing expenses, and even a portion of your home utilities if you work from home. Understanding what you can deduct will help you maximise your tax savings.

Seeking Professional Advice

Navigating the intricacies of side hustle taxation can be daunting, especially if you're unfamiliar with tax laws and regulations. In such cases, seeking advice from a qualified tax professional is highly recommended. At Artful Accountancy, we can provide personalised guidance tailored to your specific circumstances, ensuring that you meet your tax obligations while optimising your financial situation.

Conclusion

As the side hustle economy continues to thrive, HMRC's focus on taxation is unlikely to disappear. Whether you're selling handmade crafts online, or buying items from boot sales and charity shops to make a profit on eBay, it's crucial to understand your tax obligations and comply with HMRC regulations. By keeping accurate records, registering for self-assessment when necessary, leveraging tax deductions, and seeking professional advice when needed, you can navigate the complexities of side hustle taxation with confidence and peace of mind. Remember, staying on the right side of the taxman ensures a smoother journey towards your financial goals.