From attending work conferences in your PJs to ordering Nando’s on Deliveroo for lunch, working from home does have its perks. And we’ve just discovered another one.
According to Money Saving Expert and all-round financial guru, Martin Lewis, anyone who has worked from home since April 6 2020 – even for just one day – can claim tax relief for the entire year – worth £60 or £125. Yes, really.
Martin discovered that HMRC had launched a brand new microservice allowing people working from home to claim back the whole tax year’s claim, regardless of how long you were at home for. And the best part? It honestly takes less than five minutes.
Sceptical? So was Martin, so he called HMRC who told him: “We recognise that the working-from-home situation is very fluid this year, so we’re accepting claims for the full year’s expenses. That includes even if people have only worked from home for some of the year, to avoid needing to contact us if you have to work from home again.”
We’re here for it and we had a look into it.
What is the tax relief for working from home?
According to the government website, “You may be able to claim tax relief for additional household costs if you have to work at home on a regular basis, either for all or part of the week. This includes if you have to work from home because of coronavirus (COVID-19).”
They state that you cannot claim tax relief if you choose to work from home but that additional costs include things like heating, metered water bills, home contents insurance, business calls or a new broadband connection count. “They do not include costs that would stay the same whether you were working at home or in an office, such as mortgage interest, rent or council tax,” states the website.
You may also be able to claim tax relief on equipment you’ve bought, such as a laptop, chair or mobile phone.
How much can you claim?
You can either claim tax relief on:
- £6 a week from 6 April 2020 (for previous tax years the rate is £4 a week) – you will not need to keep evidence of your extra costs
- the exact amount of extra costs you’ve incurred above the weekly amount – you’ll need evidence such as receipts, bills or contracts
You’ll get tax relief based on the rate at which you pay tax. For example, if you pay the 20% basic rate of tax and claim tax relief on £6 a week you would get £1.20 per week in tax relief (20% of £6).
Since posting about it on his blog and mentioning it on his TV show, 1.4 million people have claimed the money back, so what are you waiting for? You could even donate it to charity or to the NHS. Claim yours on the government website.