Tax Return Season

In the midst of the tax return season, I decided to join a bloggers group on Facebook. I guess I’ve been feeling disillusioned with accountancy. Or maybe just overwhelmed and out of my depths for a while and I wanted to do something different. I like writing and blogging was one way I could do this without worrying too much about how it sounds. Recently I’ve been thinking about what to do with my blog and how to justify the time I spend on it. This led me to joining the bloggers group hoping I would get some ideas on how to make my blog better.

An Accountants Help

However, as soon as they found out I was an accountant, I received a few tax return questions. Maybe because it is tax return season that I have a lot of questions but secretly I was so pleased. The questions are really simple questions that I could easily answer. This made me feel really confident in my ability as an accountant also a renewed interest in accountancy.

It made me think about one of the reasons why I chose accountancy in the first place. I remember going to our careers library and thinking what can I do with a maths degree. There were lots of accountancy brochures so I started looking through those. Anyway, in the ACCA brochure, there was an accountant who worked for a football club. As I was still not sure (at 21) what I wanted to do, I thought that this would be a good idea. Once I was fully qualified, I can decide and then go and work for a company I have an interest in.

Back to tax returns

At the time, I wanted to be an accountant for a bookshop. Actually, I could still happily go and work at a bookshop. However, that never happened as I remained in practice for most of my working life. Now though, with this blogging group, I feel inspired to help them with their tax queries and even look into things and find out more if required.  It might only last the tax return season and I still have some tax returns to complete so I should probably focus on that first.

Coming back to reality, as I mentioned in previous blogs, the HMRC queries have still not cleared and its really hard to feel that I am getting anywhere with it. Most of the people I talk to at HMRC seem clueless or so stuck in what feels like scripted answers that I don’t seem to get anywhere.  Letters seem to take forever to get a reply but this seems to be the only way I can get a response that vaguely makes a bit of sense. Another thing that annoys me about HMRC is the inflexibility and lack of understanding they have for the general hard-working tax payers while multinational companies and wealthy celebrities can get away with paradise papers.

I’m discovering though, that there are lots of things about accountancy that I am still good at and I can still be of use to even a small community on Facebook.

Originally posted on https://www.accountingweb.co.uk/community/blogs/lilac1/tax-return-season

 

Claiming just expenses on your tax return

Recently I was asked if they could do a tax return if they didn’t have any sales and just put expenses through. My initial thought was why go through the whole hassle of doing a tax return and the stress of meeting the self-assessment deadline if you don’t have to? With a new business, you can go back up to 7 years to claim your expenses and if you earn less than £1000, you can receive trading allowance before you even need to declare your income.

Technically though you could claim just expenses. There are some restrictions in that you would need to prove to HMRC your business is genuine. You need to do at least 10 hours a week with a view to making a profit. Continue reading “Claiming just expenses on your tax return”

My Top 5 Posts For 2017

I thought I would summarise my blogging year for 2017 with my top 5 most read posts this year.  For a few years now, I have been posting every Friday for which I feel quite proud. Until you read how there are other bloggers who write nearly every day or even more than once a day! People blog for a variety of reasons though so for now I’m happy with once a week.

Originally, when I started posting on Fridays, it was with the intention of writing the post live on the Friday. But the more I read and learn about blogging and how to make it interesting, the longer it takes to actually post a blog.

I’m still trying to find a niche that combines what I like writing about with what is popular and actually gets read.  This led me to looking at my stats for which posts gets the most views.  Below are my top 5 for 2017: Continue reading “My Top 5 Posts For 2017”

The Tax Return Checklist

Every year, when tax return season approaches I send out a standard tax return reminder email along with a standard tax return checklist. This is a habit I picked up from working in practice for over 10 years. I very much doubt it ever gets read based on the emails and phone calls I get about tax returns. Its not very fancy which could be its downfall but in my mind, I’ve covered everything. Continue reading “The Tax Return Checklist”

Four years at Aqilla

Since going on maternity leave over 7 years ago, I’ve attempted working in several different jobs trying to fit it in with life as a new mum and working. I’ve been a full-time mum, I’ve attempted to work for myself as an accountant in practice, I’ve attempted to juggle 3 to 4 different accounting contracts at the same time, I’ve even gone off in a tangent and attempted other things like this blog and other writing gigs. However, in the last four years the one thing I have held onto has been working for Aqilla. Continue reading “Four years at Aqilla”

Is it worth having a second house?

A second house can be a good investment but with so many changes to tax laws at the moment, you may start to wonder is it worth it.  Some of the few things that you would need to consider are: Continue reading “Is it worth having a second house?”

Accounting for bloggers – Part 1

Accounting for bloggers is a four part email series.  This first post gives you an idea of what the email series will be about and starts by looking at allowable expenses.

Whether you have just started blogging or you have been blogging for a while, one of the things that you might need to think about is money.  This four part series will look into how you can start getting organised and be prepared for any tax liabilities. Continue reading “Accounting for bloggers – Part 1”