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The launch of a landlord database outlined in the Renters Reform Bill will give HMRC unparalleled access to information to launch tax investigations.

The Renters’ (Reform) Bill introduced into Parliament recently, proposes a private rented sector database with details of landlords and their properties let under residential tenancies.

The Bill does not clearly set out that HMRC will get full access to all information submitted as part of the registration process, however, it is reasonable to assume that the tax authority will make use of the publicly accessible data for compliance activities.  They already access information such as the Land Registry records to help them identify cases for investigation with a view to charging tax, late payment interest and tax-geared penalties.

HMRC is keen to ensure landlords declare their rental profits and gains on sale so they pay the tax they owe. It encourages those who have made mistakes to voluntarily correct their position by using the Let Property Campaign, part of HMRC’s digital disclosure service.

If you are an individual landlord engaged in renting out residential properties, you can disclose any previously undisclosed taxes on rental income to HMRC under the Let Property Initiative. This includes individuals who:

  • Rent out a single property
  • Rent out multiple properties
  • Specialise in renting properties to students or the workforce
  • Rent out a room in your primary residence, exceeding the Rent a Room Scheme threshold
  • Reside abroad while renting out a property in the UK
  • Reside in the UK while renting out a property overseas
  • Rent out a holiday home, even if you utilise it personally

However, please note that this scheme does not apply to companies or trusts involved in renting out residential property or to those renting out commercial properties.

If you are uncertain about whether you need to disclose unpaid taxes under this initiative, or should you require further advice and professional tailored guidance based on your unique circumstances, the CB Reid Team are available to help you.