There was chaos on the streets of the capital for the last 48 hours as the tube strike reached its full effects. Much of the underground in central London had to close due to the strike with just a couple of stations and lines running. The lack of an underground service forces many commuters to find an alternative means of getting to work; clogging up the already congested roads and over ground stations.
When properties and other long-term assets are sold, a Capital Gains Tax (CGT) charge is normally payable on the profit made. However, a special relief is available where the property sold has been the main residence of the owner throughout the period of ownership. This is principal private residence (PPR) relief, and it is a 100% relief. That means that when you sell your home, you will generally not owe any tax on the property’s increase in value. If you have always lived in the property and do not own another private residence, the relief is straightforward. However, it is important to understand the rules and laws surrounding it.
The hustle and bustle of London life has been an attraction for a couple of years now, so when the opportunity came to work at WSM and relocate to London I jumped at the chance. Coming from Nottingham, London seems enormous and can appear quite intimidating; one of the surprising things I first noticed was the constant mass of people all rushing to different places, and this seems to continue throughout the day. Working in Wimbledon is perfect as it is busy but not quite as intense; the commute in the opposite direction means I can avoid the crush of suits on the tube in the mornings!
Locals of Wimbledon will fondly recall 'Morrisons' changing their names to 'Murrisons' last year to support Andy Murray throughout the Championships, then to 'Murriwins' after his brilliant defeat of Novak Djokovic involving the straight sets match that lasted over three hours! Thousands of visitors sat on the grass and deck chairs in the Piazza (organised by Love Wimbledon) and watched the big screen provide two weeks of tense action from the sports men and women. As always, bars and restaurants saw a surge in business and Boots almost sold out of sun-cream.
Over the past few weeks my morning routine has not faltered. I wake up. I negotiate my way around the end of the bed (not always successfully) and head towards to the bathroom. Once there, I head to the back wall and stare out of the window. Usually my presence is met by an over zealous security light on a commercial unit behind my flat that takes great pleasure in highlighting my every move to anybody who happens to care. Once both my eyes and ego have adjusted to the limelight, my gaze is caught as originally intended to a small space just behind the insecure commercial unit, in order to observe the white water rapids that have recently replaced the nice calm section of the Thames just metres away from my abode.
House price figures have been released for 2013, and show a whopping 8.4% increase across the UK, the biggest annual increase in property price since July 2010. The average house price has reached £175,826, with the majority of the increase being in London.
This isn't quite accounting or tax related but if you are a landlord or tenant and party to an assured shorthold tenancy agreement, this should be useful.
The Government has been concerned for a long time that many people are not saving enough for their retirement, and so it is looking to employers to make changes to ensure this does not continue. It is estimated that around seven million people are not saving enough (or at all) for their retirement.
Over the past few years HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) have introduced several campaigns targeting different risk areas and trades, in an attempt to help and encourage those involved, to come forward and bring their tax affairs up to date. The campaigns have covered a whole range of risk areas and trades, such as, plumbers, electricians, VAT compliance, property sales and the offshore disclosure facility.
It's that time of year already. Christmas yule logs are on sale in supermarkets, the clocks have gone back and nights are most certainly getting colder. Tonight we will hear the sounds of children taking to the streets to scoff the neighbours' candy, and all of these signs can only mean one thing. It's time to start thinking about your tax return.