Category Archives: Money

National Living Wage Rises To £7.50 in April 2017: How Will It Affect Small Businesses?

National Living Wage Rises To £7.50 in April 2017: How Will It Affect Small Businesses?

The UK’s national living wage will increase by 30% to £7.50 starting April 2017. The increase is expected to benefits millions of workers aged 26 years and above. The minimum amount of money earned by British workers before tax will stand at £11,500 as a result of the increase. Workers aged 25 years and below are expected to get smaller increases. The national living wage increment came as a surprise to most employers. Here’s a summary of how the increase is expected to affect small businesses.

Burden for small businesses

The new national living wage rate is bound to increase the cost of doing business for small businesses. The new rate is expected to force small businesses to reduce their workforce and focus more on productivity. In a nutshell, the new rate is expected to reduce the number of jobs available in the small businesses sector. According to recent surveys done by recruitment firm Manpower, employers have plans to scale back their recruitment plans.

Businesses which have responded on the issue i.e. Costa Coffee plan on transferring the burden to the consumer. This simply means that the cost of goods and services produced by small businesses in the UK will increase. Some businesses have also indicated their preference for younger workers going forward in an effort to bypass the new legislation.

Employers are also expected to make contractual changes to deal with the uncertainties introduced by the new legislation. The contractual changes are expected to help employers gain back some of the control i.e. on what they pay their workers. For instance, some employers are already making contractual changes on bonus payments among other employee benefits. The impact of such contractual changes is expected to increase the number of disgruntled employees introducing other problems i.e. low productivity. Employers should also brace for legal battles as employees contest such contractual changes.

Employee relation issues are also expected to increase as employers take counteractive measures i.e. increase supervision to boost productivity. In a nutshell, small businesses are expected to take up a huge burden as they try to boost productivity as opposed to taking unfavourable measures such as raising prices. In some cases, small businesses will be forced to raise prices which may increase competition and in turn, reduce profits.

Terminology issues

The new rate is also expected to introduce confusion with other wage rates such as; the Living Wage Foundation rate. Small business owners need clear explanations for the new rate to retain integrity.

Neutral effect

Although any increase in national wages tends to do more harm than good for small businesses, the benefits of compliance may neutralise the negative effects. If employers who pay the official rate get accreditation among other notable benefits that allow them to boost profitability, the new rate can have a neutral effect. The national living wage rise could also have a natural effect if the increase in cost is passed on to the shareholders of small businesses in the short term.

Benefits

The new national living wage rate offers some benefits as well. Besides introducing an unnecessary burden to small businesses among other problems like terminology issues, the new rate stands to make accreditation more attractive for businesses that want to gain competitive advantage through differentiation.

Small businesses also stand to benefit from increased productivity. Employees are also less likely to look for other jobs given the increase. This will, in turn, lower recruitment costs. Small businesses are also expected to reap the full benefits of training/investing in their staff.
It’s also worth noting businesses stand to get help. According to George Osborne, businesses will get corporation tax cuts by 2-18% to counteract negative effects of the new rate on profits. Small firms also stand to enjoy exemptions like paying national insurance on staff employed full time.

Summary

The national living wage increase will affect small businesses positively and negatively. The extent of the positive or negative impact is, however, dependent on emerging details as well as how small businesses plan to react. Small business owners who plan early stand to avoid most (if not all) negative effects.

Is the Company Director of Swift Money Limited.
He oversees all day to day operations of the company and actively participates in providing information regarding the payday/short term loan industry.

Do E-Cigarettes Actually Help You Quit?

Do E-Cigarettes Actually Help You Quit?

Smoking is a difficult habit to stop on will power alone. As a result, many smokers who want to quit turn to all sorts of techniques. E-cigarettes (or e-cigs) are the most popular technique currently. An e-cigarette is simply a cigarette shaped device that contains a nicotine-based liquid which is vaporized and inhaled to offer a stimulating experience that resembles that of smoking a typical tobacco cigarette.

In essence, an e-cigarette is supposed to give you the exact same experience of smoking a typical cigarette minus the harmful effects of smoking tobacco i.e. lung cancer among other diseases like emphysema. Although e-cigarettes appear to be better alternatives to tobacco smoking, there is a lot of controversy surrounding the fact that e-cigarettes can help you quit smoking. The effectiveness of e-cigarettes in regards to helping smokers quit has been embraced and opposed in equal measure.

Many e-cigarette manufacturers claim their e-cigarettes have helped people quit smoking, however, is this true? A lot of people have also been on record claiming e-cigarettes have helped them quit smoking. Are these claims valid or they are simply marketing strategies by e-cigarette manufacturers? Do e-cigarettes actually help you quit?

To help you answer these questions here’s what you need to know about e-cigarettes

E-cigs can give you the same experience as smoking a typical cigarette. If you have problems quitting smoking because you like the whole experience of smoking, e-cigs are a great alternative because they contain the most important ingredient in conventional cigarettes i.e. the nicotine and they also resemble typical cigarettes in every respect.
In essence, shifting to an e-cigarette doesn’t make smoking seem like such a bad idea since it eliminates all the risks associated with tobacco smoking.

What about the nicotine?

It’s worth noting that many people have problems quitting smoking because of nicotine addiction. E-cigarettes contain e-liquid which is simply nicotine, so addiction risks are still present. Some e-cigarette manufacturers, however, claim they don’t actually use nicotine in their e-liquid by instead use harmless liquids that offer the same high as nicotine. In such a case, the effectiveness and safety of an e-cigarette is dependent on the type of e-liquid used.

The effectiveness of an e-cigarette is also dictated by the nicotine strength used. E-cigarettes come in different nicotine strengths. The most effective nicotine strength is one that replicates a typical smoking experience. Personal tastes and preferences must, however, be taken into account since different people may prefer different nicotine strengths hence their preference for different cigarette brands.

E-cigarette manufacturer

The effectiveness of e-cigarettes also depends on the e-cigarette manufacturer in question. Since the e-cigarette industry is relatively new and became popular a few years ago, many unscrupulous e cig manufacturers have come up in an effort to cash in on a profitable trend. Such manufacturers are bound to compromise the quality of the e-cigs they produce which in turn compromises the effectiveness of the e-cigs produced. Considering the industry isn’t strictly regulated currently, it’s hard to say that all e-cigs are effective in helping people quit smoking given the fact that it’s hard to know what chemicals have been used to make every single e-cig in the market today.

What does the science say?

Although the concept of e-cigarettes has been applauded by many, research is still ongoing on the effectiveness of e-cigarettes. Scientists are yet to prove that e-cigs can help tobacco smokers quit. Factors such as poor regulation as well as the relatively new nature of the industry are making it extremely hard to track new information and conduct conclusive studies.

Verdict

It’s not clear whether e-cigarettes actually help you quit. It’s, however, accurate to say that e-cigarettes reduce the health risks associated with smoking traditional tobacco cigarettes because they don’t contain tobacco which introduces severe health risks when smoked. It might, therefore, be worth trying to switch to e-cigs, however, you should be aware of the fact that e-cigs have risks too. For instance, the safety of an e-cig depends on the manufacturer. You should buy e-cigs from reputable manufacturers only otherwise you stand to expose yourself to new health risks.

It is also worth noting that you can quit smoking on volition as well as with the help of medical health practitioners like therapists and counselors.

Is the Company Director of Swift Money Limited.
He oversees all day to day operations of the company and actively participates in providing information regarding the payday/short term loan industry.

What Does Low Inflation Actually Mean For A Countries Economy?

What Does Low Inflation Actually Mean For A Countries Economy?

Before assessing the effect of low inflation on a country’s economy, it’s important to define the term inflation.

What is inflation?

Inflation is a term commonly used to refer to the general increase in prices of goods and services. Inflation is measured as an annual % increase. As inflation increases, the purchasing power of every pound decreases. For example, if the inflation rate is 3%, then a £1 loaf of bread will cost £1.03 in one year.
Ideally, the price of goods and services is bound to increase over time. The rise should, however, be gradual otherwise, the economy will suffer. Let’s shift our focus to the effects of inflation on the economy for us to understand the effects of low inflation.

Inflation effects

When prices of goods/services increase, the cost of living also increases. It also becomes more expensive to conduct business in a country with high inflation. The cost of borrowing increases. There is also a corresponding increase in corporate as well as government bond yields. As a result, inflation can have negative as well as positive effects.

If inflation is controlled i.e. kept at low or at reasonable levels, the economy of the country in question prospers. The opposite happens when inflation is too high. Low inflation boosts employment. When people are employed, they have more money to spend. When people are buying more goods and services, the economy grows.

The full impact of low inflation in regards to economic recovery can’t, however, be assessed with unmatched accuracy. To understand this in-depth, it’s important to assess the effects of low inflation on economic metrics such as; the GDP, cost of borrowing and the consumer price index.

Effects of low inflation on GDP

The GDP (Gross domestic product) of a country is simply the value of all goods/services produced by that country. GDP is expressed as a percentage and adjusted for inflation. For instance, if the growth was 8%, but the inflation was 3%, the GDP would be 5%. Low inflation is, therefore, good for the GDP or overall growth of the economy.

Effects of low inflation on cost of borrowing

Theoretically, low inflation can help a country’s economy to recover from depression or recession. The interest rates must, however, be low for this to happen. Low inflation and low interest rates decrease the cost of borrowing encouraging people to take loans and invest or spend. Low-interest rates may, however, make banks reluctant to issue loans since the returns on loans are equally low. A low inflation and low-interest rate environment may, therefore, have a negative effect on consumption.

Low interest rates over a prolonged period of time coupled with low inflation assure the business community of fixed costs. Business owners are able to plan better i.e. when to borrow, market, hiring as well as expand in low interest/low inflation environments. Investors are also in a better place to calculate returns on investments on corporate and government bonds. It’s, however, worth noting that that the effects of low inflation may vary in regards to borrowing.

Effects of low inflation on the consumer price index

Inflation is usually measured by considering the price of essential goods and services as opposed to all goods and services. Inflation focuses on consumables (in the consumer price index) like food prices as well as the price of clothing, housing, energy, education, medical care, communication, and recreation. If the price of all goods/services in the consumer price index increases by say 4%, the rate of inflation is pegged at 4% and the purchasing power decreases by 4%. Low inflation is good since it ensures the cost of essential goods and services remains stable.

Summary

Low inflation is beneficial to the economy on almost every level from the GDP to the cost of borrowing and price of essential goods and services. Low inflation is particularly beneficial to a struggling economy since it helps to keep a check on the price of essentials and also encourages people to borrow and spend. Low inflation must, however, be supplemented by low-interest rates for it to encourage borrowing and spending.

Is the Company Director of Swift Money Limited.
He oversees all day to day operations of the company and actively participates in providing information regarding the payday/short term loan industry.

Top Energy-Saving Tips For Your Home in the UK

Top Energy-Saving Tips For Your Home in the UK

Your monthly energy bill may not seem like much . However, it adds up to a lot of money every year. The average monthly energy bill (depending on the house) ranges from £61 for a small house to £125 for a large house according to the latest statistics. Considering you don’t have to spend as much money as you do on energy bills, you can save plenty of money if you decide to become more energy conscious. It is possible to pay approximately half of what you normally pay by considering the energy saving tips below. Here’s what you need to do;

1. Switch off lights/appliances you don’t need: This is an obvious but commonly overlooked energy saving tip in most households in the UK and around the world. If you just switched off all the lights you don’t need at any given time in your home, you are bound to save some money every year. The same applies to appliances. You should switch off/unplug all appliances and chargers you don’t need at any given time to save energy. It’s worth noting that leaving appliances on standby isn’t enough. Most appliances must be turned off completely, otherwise they will continue consuming power. You can save approximately £50 (even more) per year by following this tip alone.

2. Switch to energy saving bulbs (LEDs): This is another great home energy saving tip to consider. Typical light bulbs consume up to 10 times more power than energy saving bulbs. Considering every household has plenty of bulbs, switching to LEDs will definitely lower your energy bill. Although energy saving bulbs are more expensive than typical light bulbs, the savings you stand to enjoy justifies the cost. Furthermore, LEDs produce light that is bright enough. Switching to LEDs costs approximately £100 for the average household however you stand to recoup your investment in less than a year.

3. Draught-proof your home: Most UK households spend the most electricity on heating. Draught proofing your home is an excellent way to ensure you don’t have to use home heating appliances for extended time periods. It’s worth noting that households lose heat via draughts around windows and doors. Blocking these gaps will ensure your home retains heat much longer during cold seasons reducing your energy bill in the process. Considering you stand to save £100+ annually and you don’t have to hire a professional to draught proof your home, this tip comes highly recommended.

4. Use energy efficient appliances: You can also save more on your energy bill by sticking to appliances which have been certified energy efficient i.e. Energy Star appliances. Such appliances have a blue Energy Star label. It’s easy to find Energy Star appliances in the UK so you shouldn’t have a problem implementing this tip. To avoid incurring huge costs initially, you can switch to Energy Star appliances gradually. Switching to an Energy Star appliance i.e. a fridge can save you up to £100 a year.

5. Transition to solar power: Solar power is the cheapest form of power available today. Although installing solar power in your home is costly, the saving you stand to enjoy in the long-term is significant given the fact that you will never have to pay any monthly energy bill going forward. Solar power also has other notable benefits i.e. it is cleaner/safer. To avoid incurring a huge initial cost, you can transition slowly i.e. install a solar water heater first since water heating contributes significantly to your monthly energy bill.

Summary

It is possible to reduce your monthly energy bill by more than 50% by taking the above measures. Obvious measures such as switching off lights and appliances you don’t need as well as using energy-efficient appliances go a long way in ensuring you pay only for the energy you need/use. Measures such as draught proofing your home will reduce your energy bill significantly during cold weather. To enjoy the greatest energy savings, in the long run, consider transitioning to solar power.
Many people take out short-term loans such as payday loans to settle emergency bills i.e. electricity bills. Get your energy bill in control and forget about taking out loans to cover such bills.

Is the Company Director of Swift Money Limited.
He oversees all day to day operations of the company and actively participates in providing information regarding the payday/short term loan industry.

What Are Bridging Loans?

What Are Bridging Loans?

Bridging loans are short term loans extended to individuals who have to pay their debt soon but haven’t had access to their main line of credit yet. Bridging loans ‘bridge’ the gap that exists when you have pressing cash needs that must be attended to immediately but you still have to wait for your main line of credit to become available.

Bridging loans are popular in real estate investments. They resemble payday loans but in a real estate context. The loans usually facilitate property purchases that wouldn’t normally be possible. In today’s world of downsizing and upgrading homes, the chances of finding your next home before you clear your current mortgage loan is very high. In such a case, a bridging loan will be perfect for you.

Bridging loans are short term loans like payday loans. However, they are larger. The loans are also high-interest. Bridging loans are typically meant to help you buy new property while you are waiting to sell/receive proceeds from the sale of existing property. The loans are also used to help individuals planning to sell their property/home quickly after renovating. Bridging loans are also ideal for individuals planning to buy property at an auction.

How do bridging loans work?

The loan amount you receive is usually dictated by the equity you have in your existing property. Interest is usually calculated on a short term basis i.e. on the term of the loan which is usually less than a year. Your credit rating or credit score is also considered when calculating interest. Banks also consider other normal lending criteria. Borrowers are expected to make their repayments normally until the property in question is sold. Bridging loans also attract new property purchase costs such as legal fees and stamp duty.

When are bridging loans good for you?

Bridging loans are great options for property investments that require large sums of money in a short time. In such instances, traditional forms of financing aren’t suitable because they take too long to process. Banks take long to process mortgage loan applications. In cases where you need to buy property from an auction, it might not be possible to secure financing in time if you apply for a typical mortgage loan.
Some borrowers also use bridging loans today as simple alternatives to mainstream lending. If you home has some equity, you can always get a bridging loan to take care of some pressing cash needs. It is, however, advisable to think about all your options before using a bridging loan as an alternative to mainstream lending. Bridging loans are perfect when you have a clear exit strategy i.e. an ongoing property sale that is about to be concluded. A bridging loan will also be perfect for you when you intend to use it for property investment purposes only i.e. when you want to a buy-to-let mortgage.

You should also consider taking a bridging loan when you are sure you can get access to a mortgage loan with a mainstream lender. This is important since it eliminates the risk of losing your home/property in case you are unable to meet your repayment obligations. In simpler terms, you shouldn’t take a bridging loan if you can’t qualify for a typical mortgage loan. The FCA has raised concerns about financial advisers recommending bridging loans too quickly. This can be attributed to the high-risk and high-interest aspect of such loans. Ideally, you should tread carefully if you haven’t taken on a bridging loan before. Besides the high-risk and high-interest aspect, bridging loans also tend to attract hefty fees and some hidden charges as well which could easily render the loan unmanageable.

In a nutshell, a bridging loan shouldn’t be viewed as a suitable alternative to traditional lending. Short term loans like payday loans are better alternatives since there are lenders that offer high borrowing limits capable of catering for substantial cash needs.

Getting a bridging loan

There are many bridging lenders in the UK ranging from small one-man bands to professional outfits regulated by the FCA. When taking out a bridging loan, stick to lenders who are regulated by the FCA since such lenders are bound legally to recommend bridging loans when they are appropriate for you.
 

Is the Company Director of Swift Money Limited.
He oversees all day to day operations of the company and actively participates in providing information regarding the payday/short term loan industry.

What Does the New £1 Coin Mean for the UK?

What Does the New £1 Coin Mean for the UK?

The UK has released a new £1 coin that is set to become the most secure coin in the world.
This new release puts an end to the reign of the old £1 coin that has been in circulation for thirty years now. The new £1 coin which has 12 sides will enter circulation officially on March 28th, 2017. The old coin will stop being used as legal tender from 15th November 2017. The Royal Mint is set to make 1.5 billion + new £1 coins.

Brief history

The British government has always had plans to replace the £1 note and coin. The plans were first launched on 21st April 1983. Since then, the British Royal Mint has made over 2.2. Billion £1 coins. There has been an increasing need to replace the old £1 coin since statistics indicate that one in every thirty £1 coins exchanged in the recent past has been fake. The increasing vulnerability of the old £1 coin informed the decision to introduce the new £1 coin.

Features of the new coin

The new £1 coin has numerous security features among them being a hologram. Depending on the angle from which you view the coin from, the hologram changes (from the pound symbol to 1). Also, the new coin features an outer and an inner ring coloured using gold and silver respectively. The coin is also lighter and thinner than the old coin and features smaller lettering. The diameter is, however, larger. The old coin also has milled edges.
Also, there are more than 25 different designs appearing on the new coin. The design ranges from trees to dragons. The new coin has borrowed its design from the old twelve-sided threepenny bit that seized being in circulation back in 1971. The new coin also features a latent image, has very small lettering, and milled edges (groves on the alternate sides of the coin).

Effects

It’s worth noting that approximately £1.3 billion is stored in savings jars (in coins) across the UK and the current one pound coin accounts for approximately 33% of these coins. As a result, people have been urged to either spend their old £1 coins or return them before they seize being legal tender. People also have the option of banking their old coins.

Another notable effect revolves around counterfeiting. The new one pound coin was designed solely to stop counterfeiting. As a result, businesses across the UK are expected to save the millions lost in counterfeit one pound coins. The new coin features 12 sides which are instantly recognizable. The coin also has a secret high-security feature that prevents counterfeiting in the future.

All UK businesses are also expected to prepare for the introduction, co-circulation as well as demonetisation periods i.e. when the coin is first introduced, when it will be in circulation alongside the old coin as well as when the old coin stops being used as legal tender.

When preparing for introduction, all business are expected to check if they operate equipment i.e. vending machines which accept/handle the old £1 coin. If so, business owners should contact their equipment suppliers to know if they will need any adaptations or replacements on their machines and when those adaptations or replacements should be performed. Business owners are also expected to train their staff on the new coin features as well as consider any other changes to cash handling processes.

During the co-circulation period, business owners should have equipment accepting/dispensing the new coin. During the demonetization period i.e. 16th October 2017 onwards, all coin handling equipment should accept the new coin. Business are however free to decline payments made using the old coin. Business owners who handle machines which accept the old pound coin i.e. vending machines stand to be most affected. Such businesses must incur the cost of updating their machines or risk losing business.

What happens to the old coins?

According to the 2014 budget announcement, the old £1 coins which will be returned will be meltdown and reused to make more new £1 coins. Old coins should be spent before 15th October 2017.

Is the Company Director of Swift Money Limited.
He oversees all day to day operations of the company and actively participates in providing information regarding the payday/short term loan industry.

Higher Education in the U.K vs. USA: Is it worth the debt

Higher Education in the U.K vs. USA: Is it worth the debt

According to a recent Sutton Trust report, UK graduates face higher debt levels compared to their US counterparts. According to the report, US graduates leave with higher education debt averaging £19,100 to £29,100 depending on factors such as the institution attended while UK graduates leave with approximately £44,500 in debt. Higher education debt has always been higher in the U.S. The UK has however overtaken the U.S. causing huge concerns.

UK graduates also have a higher debt to starting salary ratio than their U.S. counterparts. The Sutton Trust Report, however, states that the repayment system in the UK is more advantageous to borrowers. The report which focuses on graduate debt in the UK and U.S. among other countries such as; Australia, New Zealand and Canada recommends that UK legislators assess UK’s higher education funding policies as well as the impact of those policies on poor students.

The report also calls for a complex assessment on whether UK’s current student loan system provides value for money to higher education learners as well as taxpayers. There are huge concerns about policies adopted in the UK on student funding such as maintenance grants which are set to be scrapped and replaced by loans which feature a frozen repayment threshold. Poor students are bound to be hit hardest by these policies increasing the debt levels of UK students even further to £50,000+ after graduation. This begs the question; is higher education worth the debt?

a. Many jobs today still require a degree

Most people still argue that taking a student loan is worth it because most jobs in the UK, as well as most places around the world still, require a degree. Although students stand to accumulate thousands of pounds in debt, majority of the jobs require a bachelor’s degree as the minimum and most important requirement. You must have a college degree to get a job in the industries offering the most jobs today i.e. the finance, engineering and education industries.

b. If you will make enough to pay off your student loan comfortably, go for it

If there are prospects of earning enough money to repay your loan, taking a student loan is worth it. Although repaying £44,500 may seem challenging when you consider interest on the loan over periods exceeding ten years, devoting approximately 10% of your salary every month will be adequate to clear a typical student loan. Furthermore, it’s better to dedicate a small percentage of your future income that have no income at all because you didn’t take a student loan.

c. Your future earning potential is higher

A degree increases your earning potential exponentially over a lifetime. Earning a university degree sets you up for better-paying jobs in the future that a high school graduate may not have access to. A degree also opens up doors for higher learning opportunities which increase your earning potential even further. In essence, a £44,500 student loan isn’t much when you compare what you stand to earn in a lifetime once you graduate, get a job and advance in your career.

d. The benefits of higher education go way beyond education

It is also worth taking a student loan since you stand to enjoy greater benefits than simply getting a good job and salary in the future. Higher education broadens your perspective in life allowing you to make better/more informed decisions in life. The goal of higher education goes way beyond earning a living. For instance, studying abroad will definitely increase your general knowledge, social skills and broaden your horizon about life and people in general. These benefits are extremely valuable although they can’t be quantified.

Summary

Accumulating debt isn’t interesting. Taking debt is however justified in some cases. For instance, taking a student loan to pursue higher education is wise since the benefits you stand to gain far outweigh the cost. Although the UK has the highest student debt levels currently, you should really consider taking a student loan if you want to increase your chances of securing a good job in any of the major industries. In most cases, students are able to pay off their student loans fast when they secure a job after graduation. You should, however, choose the higher education institution you go to wisely and avoid unnecessary expenses throughout your studies to keep the debt at manageable levels.

Is the Company Director of Swift Money Limited.
He oversees all day to day operations of the company and actively participates in providing information regarding the payday/short term loan industry.

Legal Tax Loopholes in the UK: What You Need to Know

Legal Tax Loopholes in the UK: What You Need to Know

You don’t have to lie or do anything illegal to reduce your tax bill in the UK. We don’t advocate for any illegal activity here. Please note that there is a difference between avoiding and evading tax. The latter is illegal. Furthermore, there are some tax incentives you can utilise legally to save a lot of money with little to no effort. Here’s what you need to know;

1. Borrow tax-efficiently

This isn’t exactly a tax loophole. It’s more of an obvious but commonly overlooked tax saving tip. You can save a lot of money on taxes in the UK if you borrow wisely. Anyone who has buy-to-let property is eligible for tax relief on their mortgage interest. It, therefore, makes more sense to borrow and buy property for rental purposes than to use the money to reduce the total mortgage amount since you aren’t eligible for any tax relief in such instances. Furthermore, it is possible to borrow more when you start getting rental income and in such cases, you can use the money to buy more property for rental purposes.

2. Invest tax-efficiently

You can also maximise tax benefits by investing wisely. It’s worth noting that you get a huge tax relief by investing in Enterprise Investment Schemes or Venture Capital Trusts in the UK since both investments are aimed at encouraging private investment in small to medium-sized companies. Buying shares of qualified companies under Enterprise Investment Scheme rules qualifies you for a 20% tax reduction on your personal tax bill, and you get to enjoy other tax benefits such as relief from inheritance and capital gains tax. Investing through a Venture Capital Trust qualifies you for a 30% tax reduction on your personal tax bill, and you can invest up to £200,000. Instead of investing typically, you should really consider Enterprise Investment Schemes and/or Venture Capital Trusts. In case the investments don’t do well, the tax benefits usually cushion investors against investment risks.

3. Consider going offshore

It’s worth noting that there are very little advantages for UK citizens using offshore regions like Luxembourg, Liechtenstein etc. for purposes of avoiding tax. UK taxpayers are required by law to declare all their worldwide earnings including interest income earned on money deposited in overseas bank accounts. Nevertheless, there are still overseas tax loopholes to exploit. For instance, some offshore bonds still offer benefits to higher-rate taxpayers because they allow a person to defer tax. Offshore bonds are however complex products that should be used by individuals who are fully aware of their tax benefits.

4. Claim all allowances

You can also reduce your tax liability legally in the UK if you are self-employed. For instance, you can claim costs associated with running your business from home i.e. lighting, heating, property insurance, repairs as well as mortgage interests to reduce your overall tax bill. Such costs can be deducted from your overall profits. However, you may be required to pay capital gains charges that may be applicable when such a premises is sold even if you only used a single room in your home to conduct business.

5. Avoid confronting the taxman on an individual basis if you are married

There are plenty of tax allowances and reliefs in the UK offered to civil partners and married couples. These allowances and reliefs can reduce your tax bill significantly if you take the time to arrange your finances accordingly. This loophole works best when one partner pays a lower tax rate. You can switch income generating assets like investment funds, shares, jointly owned property, etc. to a partner who pays less tax. In such a case, you are only liable to paying tax on rent, dividends, and savings interest. This loophole is completely legal and effective provided you are married.

Summary

You don’t have to pay more tax than you should. You don’t have to evade tax either. There are legal alternatives for reducing your taxes in the UK. You just need to get informed. Luckily, the above information will help you enjoy some significant tax savings legally.

Is the Company Director of Swift Money Limited.
He oversees all day to day operations of the company and actively participates in providing information regarding the payday/short term loan industry.