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Important compliance deadlines for landlords

Landlords have been warned to ensure their tax affairs are in order by 5 October and that properties meet legal requirements for smoke alarms by 1 October in order to avoid potential fines.

New landlords are reminded not to miss the 5 October deadline for self-assessment, or risk incurring a fine.

Any landlord who has received a rental income of more than £2,500 (not profit made) in the tax year to 5 April 2015 must be registered with HMRC.

If landlords fail to register by this time and do not submit a tax return by 31 January 2016 (or 31 October 2015 for paper tax returns) they will be liable to pay fines issued by HMRC.

The fine is currently set at £100 for a late tax return of up to 3 months, and rises if the tax return is later still.

Landlords with a rental income of less than £2,500 and who are either working or in receipt of a pension income, will have their situation dealt with via the PAYE system.

Landlords registered by 5 October 2015 need to submit their tax return for submission of the 2014-15 by 31 January 2016 (31 October 2015 for a paper tax return) or three months from the date on which HMRC issue the notice to submit a tax return.

Tom Lacey, chartered tax adviser at Moore Blatch said:

“Many new landlords may not be aware that they must register for self-assessment and failure to do so can create significant financial penalties. Online registration is quite a simple process and for anyone who needs more help you should speak to an accountant or tax adviser.”

Another compliance deadline for landlords to be aware of is that of the Carbon Monoxide Alarm (England) Regulations 2015, which stipulates that smoke alarms must be fitted on every floor of a rental property by 1 October 2015.

Landlords must also ensure that a carbon monoxide alarm is installed in any room where solid fuel is burnt.

David Cox, managing director, Association of Residential Letting Agents, said:

"We are entirely supportive of the aims of the regulation but have recommended that the government has implemented too strict a timeframe for this.

"However, despite our calls to reconsider the timeframe, following final scrutiny of the measures a few weeks ago, the deadline was not extended and landlords must comply by 1 October.

"For those who have not yet fitted smoke alarms, we urge them to do all they can today to ensure that their properties comply with the new regulations that come into play."



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