What Can I Include in My Self-Assessment Office Expenses?

For many, January is a month of dread not only due to the dreary weather and post-Christmas finances. It’s also the month for calculating your tax bill!

If you’re a new business with business premises or have perhaps moved into a new office space, you might be wondering what expenses you can claim in your Self-Assessment Office Expenses. There are so much allowable expenses that get missed, potentially losing hundreds of pounds worth of deductible expenses. That’s right, January 31st is the deadline for submitting your self-assessment, and now is the time to be pulling together all those numbers to make sure you’ve covered all income and expenses.

So, whether you run a large scale, multi-site business or work from a fully flexible serviced office, here’s our guide to calculating your business expenses, and tax relief when you pay tax this year.

Self-assessment office expenses on your business premises can save you tax relief when you're self employed

What is a self-assessment?

If you’re self-employed this tax year – either as a sole trader or partnership – you must submit a self-assessment tax return to calculate how much income tax and National Insurance you need to pay on your taxable profits. This includes business costs like business mileage and computer software, bank and business loans, business premises rental as well as income from any self-employment or partnership.

Suppose you run a small business; it often makes sense to register as self-employed. As your taxes are not deducted from your wages instantly, you need to submit a self-assessment tax return each year to calculate your allowable business expenses, and in turn your income tax and National Insurance contributions. The self-assessment is a way of reporting your income and paying tax to HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC). 

You can submit your tax return via:

Do I need to complete a self-assessment?

You will need to complete a tax return and pay tax if you:

  • Are you self-employed and your income was more than £1,000
  • Are a company director
  • Are earning £100,000 or more 
  • had savings or investment income of more than £10,000 before tax
  • received income from abroad
  • made more than £50,000 and claimed child benefit
  • earned £2,500 or more in untaxed income, e.g. renting out a property
calculate your allowable expense and claim expenses when filing your self assessment tax return this year

When and how do I need to complete it?

So long as you have kept up with your self-employment income and expenses, filling in your self-assessment expenses doesn’t have to be too scary!

If you’re filing a Self Assessment tax return for the first time, begin by registering with HMRC online.

Once you register for self-assessment, you will automatically be issued a UTR number. Just follow the instructions in the letter containing your UTR. If you want to submit your Self Assessment tax return online, you must create a Government Gateway account.

business expense can include telephone or internet expenses, office running costs and the electricity bill

We advise allowing at least a few weeks for this process as your Government Gateway code will be issued by post, and you need this to finalise your online self-assessment registration.

Before you start, you’ll need to make sure you have from the previous tax year (from April 6th to the April 5th of the current year):

  • Unique Taxpayer Reference (UTR)
  • National Insurance number
  • records of any expenses relating to self-employment
  • Full details of income earned from employment which may include your P60, P45 if you left during the tax year
  • Details of any pension contributions, as you may be able to claim some of this money back – find out more here
  • Details of any tax payments you’ve already made this year (known as payments on account – more on this here)
  • A total of any rent you have received
  • Information about any Gift Aid you have received (you can claim tax back for this – see here for details)
  • Details of interest you’ve received from your bank
  • Any income you’ve received from overseas
  • Information about any dividends received

What Can I claim in my Self-Assessment Office Expenses

As a new business, it’s easy to miss some money-saving business expenses, which can be included in your self-assessment.

legal and financial costs associated with business expense calculations can be includes in your self assessment

No matter how big or small a cost they have had on your business this year, don’t forget you can claim expenses and tax relief from these most forgotten business premises outgoings:

1.    Rent

2.    Parking permits

3.    Property insurance

4.    Water, gas, electricity

5.    Wifi and phone lines

6.    Council tax or business rates

7.    Cleaning services (including window cleaners)

8.    Office stationery

9.    Mailing services – like franking machines and courier fees

10. Security – either physical or CCTV

11. Maintenance – such as light bulbs and repairs

12. Toilet roll, paper towels and soap

13. Printer rental and ink

14. Computer hardware and software

Home office expenses

If you have worked from home this tax year, even for a month, you can include these home office expenses on your self-assessment. You can include a portion of your rent/mortgage, utilities, and any adaptions you’ve made to your home to suit your office needs.

claim tax relief when youre self employed with this guide to your self assessment tax bill

This total portion of these expenses would be divided by the number of rooms to get the office room contribution. For the ‘full time’ calculation, you would first divide the room cost by the number of hours in a week (168) and then multiply this sum by how many hours you spent working at home.

read our guide to allowable business expenses and benefit from tax relief in your self assessment tax return

Has calculating your self-assessment offices expenses made you realise a change is needed to slimline your finances? It’s a misconception that serviced offices cost your business more than running a traditional office space. With flexible rates and all facilities included, serviced offices are an excellent option for any sized business looking to slimline their office expenses.