How to Reduce Your Tax Bill

Dec 21, 2023 By Triston Martin

Anyone can have their day ruined by an unexpected tax bill. Listed below are 12 simple steps to reduce tax liability and avert that nasty surprise. These solutions typically require itemizing your deductions rather than claiming the standard deduction, but the extra work could be well worth it.

Save hundreds by claiming your vacation expenses.

I would like to offer you some solace by saying that your commute is tax deductible, but I can't.

Nonetheless, you are eligible for reimbursement for travel expenses if your workplace is not static, you do some of your duties from home, or your clients require you to leave the area.

Some of your monthly utility costs may be tax deductible.

Some of the costs of utilities, insurance, and council tax paid by those who work from home can be deducted from their taxable income. It is possible to determine the precise amount of tax relief you will receive in two ways: The first and quickest method is to use HMRC's simple flat rate. All utilities are included, except for telephone and internet, which you will need to negotiate separately.

Your monthly hours spent working from home directly correlate to the amount of tax reduction you can claim. You could only qualify for the simplified tax rate if you worked at least 25 hours from home throughout the month. This is the tax break you can get if you work from home, broken down by how many hours a week you put in.

For tax purposes, you can deduct the cost of some types of work attire.

Don't get your hopes up; you won't be able to charge a brand-new closet. Certain occupations, however, can deduct the total cost of a labeled uniform or safety equipment at a set rate per year.

A member of the ambulance service, for instance, is eligible for a tax deduction of up to £185 per year while on duty. The amount of £60 includes the price of maintenance and cleaning for bus drivers and conductors.

Subscriptions and memberships

No, I'm not referring to streaming services like Netflix or Spotify. However, dues paid to a labor union or a professional organization and the cost of any necessary trade magazine subscriptions may be deducted from your taxable income.

Businesses that meet HMRC's standards are included on their approved-organizations list. The Teachers' Union is formed (£17.12 per month), as is the Royal Society of Arts (£187 per year).

Lifetime memberships are not included, and you, not your company, are responsible for paying for them.

Earning a higher salary is one of many benefits of acquiring new skills.

Expenses incurred to maintain professional memberships or further education to acquire or improve upon specialized abilities are deductible as company costs.

It would help if you made sure that any classes you take are relevant to your current job and company. Your donation may have a positive impact on both your tax return and the charity you support. Contributing to a good cause or supporting a local amateur sports team has many positive effects. With the help of the Gift Aid program, overseen by the Financial Conduct Authority, the charity can get back 25 cents for every pound donated. As a result, more money is donated to charity, and the wealthy also profits.

Pension tax reductions should not be forgotten.

It's essential to take advantage of pension tax reduction to the fullest extent possible because of its value. Pension payments are eligible for tax relief at the higher rate of 40% or the additional rate of 45% for those who pay taxes at those rates.

However, individuals may not obtain the total amount of tax relief they are entitled to if they pay into a particular pension system.

Employees who participate in trust-based workplace schemes and make salary sacrifice pension contributions are entitled to total tax benefits.

Couples who file jointly can save hundreds of pounds in taxes.

If you and your spouse are married or in a civil partnership, you may be eligible for the Married Couple's Allowance. This tax break is often overlooked but can significantly lower your annual tax liability.

One spouse can give up to £1,260 of their allowance to their partner, who is a basic rate taxpayer, if their combined income is less than the personal allowance (the amount you can receive without paying income tax, currently £12,570).

Couples should be given more advantages.

A further advantage for married people. Dividends from shared stockholdings can be divided between co-owners.

You may be able to avoid paying taxes if your dividend income is below the threshold of £2,000 allowed annually. The tax rate on dividends over the point is 8.75% (basic rate taxpayers) and 33.75% (higher rate taxpayers).

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