Tax relief changes for landlords

From 6th April 2017, the new tax changes will restrict relief for finance costs on residential properties to the basic rate of Income Tax. Finance costs includes mortgage interest, interest on loans to buy furnishings and fees incurred when taking out or repaying mortgages or loans. No relief is available for capital repayments of a mortgage or loan.

According to HR Revenue and Customs, those affected include ‘Individuals that receive rental income on residential property in the UK or elsewhere and incur finance costs (such as mortgage interest), excluding where the property meets all the criteria to be a furnished holiday letting.”

Landlords will no longer be able to deduct all of their finance costs from their property income to arrive at their property profits. They will instead receive a basic rate reduction from their income tax liability for their finance costs.

To give landlords time to adjust the government will introduce this change gradually from April 2017 over four years. Landlords will be able to obtain relief as follows:

  • in 2017 to 2018 the deduction from property income (as is currently allowed) will be restricted to 75% of finance costs, with the remaining 25% being available as a basic rate tax reduction
  • in 2018 to 2019, 50% finance costs deduction and 50% given as a basic rate tax reduction
  • in 2019 to 2020, 25% finance costs deduction and 75% given as a basic rate tax reduction
  • from 2020 to 2021 all financing costs incurred by a landlord will be given as a basic rate tax reduction.’

Tax changes can be complex and all landlords should seek contact an accountant for specific advice on their individual circumstances. Although the changes will be phased in, it is advisable for landlords to seek advice now to see what impact it will have in the long term. For advice on renting your property please feel free to contact a member of our team on 01631 569 466.