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1st Tax Return: How confusing!!!

(21 Posts)
Bonkerz Tue 12-Apr-05 20:16:31

Had my first Tax return come through on Friday and am SSSSSSOOOOOOO confused.

When i started childminding i had a lady from IR come out and give me advice on keeping accounts and i have followed her advice to the letter. I thought it would be easy but it aint.

On MY spreadsheets i have all my outgoings and expenses so i now have an amount that i have been paid and an amount that i have paid out so i have what i assume is my profit BUT i dont know where to put these figures or anything. Is it really this hard or am i beng totally thick????

ThomCat Tue 12-Apr-05 20:18:34

Can you get an accountant to do it for you?
I couldn't bear to have to fill a tax return out, no way, I just sign where the accountant tells me to!

Gobbledigook Tue 12-Apr-05 20:18:39

Bonkerz - it should be really straightforward if your profit is under £15K ish I think. On the self employment page you just fill in what came in total and what went out total and then the profit - you don't have to do a breakdown of where the money went.

You do have to fill in the general pages though about any other income like interest on your bank accounts.

Gobbledigook Tue 12-Apr-05 20:19:06

I always do my own on line and it's a complete doddle

motherinferior Tue 12-Apr-05 20:19:32

Tax returns are why God invented accountants.

ThomCat Tue 12-Apr-05 20:23:07

Absolutley MI, and I thank God for mine twice a year, at least.

motherinferior Tue 12-Apr-05 20:24:34

I worship mine. He is one of the young Antipodeans who make my life worth living (the others being the nice blokes who drop off our organic delivery box). Mind you I'm a Limited Company which makes things even more complicated.

Bonkerz Tue 12-Apr-05 20:31:22

id love an accountant BUT this year ive earnt (after deductions) less than £4000 (start up costs for childminding are HUGE!!!!)

Will have a look online me thinks

jothorpe Tue 12-Apr-05 20:37:33

Theres an accountant who only does Childminder's Accounts. Charges about £300 I think, though everyone who uses him says that they save more than his fee when it comes to putting things through the business.

Am I allowed to post a link on this site, or is that against the rules?

Search google for "onlychildminding" should find the site!

jothorpe Tue 12-Apr-05 20:39:24

Hey, I got the price wrong... £59 per year to do the accounts it seems. Very good value for money I feel.

Bonkerz Tue 12-Apr-05 20:39:44

yikes £300 is 1/10th of what ive earnt in a year!!! Think im gonna have to do this without an accountant just cos im a small childminder and profit is no existant.

MaryP0p1 Tue 12-Apr-05 21:05:16

There's only a few pages on the tax return that you have to fill in. You shouldn't need an accountant.

The simple way to do it is

All income
less All outgoings

= amount you have to declare as earnings.

I.e. taxable income. If less than about £5K (I think its about 49something) no tax is payable. Anything on top of that is taxable.

Hope this helps.

Gobbledigook Tue 12-Apr-05 21:13:58

Bonkerz - have you got a paper copy of the tax return? If so, fill in all relevant boxes on there first - just go through it in order and then fill out on-line where it calculates everything for you there and then. Honestly - if you only need to put in 'spent', 'paid', 'profit' it's not worth paying anyone.

I know the first one is daunting but it really is easy honest!!

KatieMac Tue 12-Apr-05 21:15:48

Bonkers do you have a short tax assessment or a long form?

If it's a short form it's really easy - if it's a long one ...you might be able to ring the Tax office and ask for a short form they might let you have one.

I (cos of my turnover) have had to request a long form

philippat Tue 12-Apr-05 21:16:59

you really shouldn't need an accountant for that kind of level of earnings. There are basically lots of pages you can simply ignore! And you've got 6 months to do it so don't panic.

Start by working out which sections you need to fill in (you will need to fill out building society interest or pension if you have them for example). Then work through them slowly.

Did your income (ignore your outgoings for a second) come to less than £15,000? If so, you can fill out the 'short' version of the self employed section where you just need to complete the 3 boxes. If it came to more than that, then it does start to get more complicated as you need to split your outgoings into different catagories.

The bit where accountants are worth their weight in diamonds is the whole carry over to next year, carry back from this year etc. Normal mortals ignore those boxes altogether. BUT, if you had a lot of start up costs, an accountant would be able to sort it out for you so that these are spread over the most tax efficient number of years, rather than putting it all into this year.

bubblerock Tue 12-Apr-05 21:24:30

We got our first one too Bonkerz, It's just sat on the table looking at me! We haven't made a profit this year but it's going to be tricky with all the info I have to find as we moved house, gave up employment, sold shares from our previous employers etc... Not looking forward to it but will try to do it asap and get it out of the way.

Satine Tue 12-Apr-05 21:32:25

I panicked when I got mine last year but I asked for a 'guide' to self-employment tax returns and then once I'd read that, I phoned the advice line and got them to talk me through it - I asked them some REALLY stupid questions and bless their hearts they patiently explained everything! So I'd give that a try before paying an accountant.

Bonkerz Tue 12-Apr-05 21:49:58

so looking at my form then Because i have only earnt 5000 then i should just fill out
Turnover (i take it thats the amount ive earnt)
Expense (everything i take off)
NET profit (difference between both above)

Also i was employed april to july last year so do i have to add this to my tax return? I have no other income form anything else.

Gobbledigook Tue 12-Apr-05 21:58:06

That's right Bonkerz.

If you were employed April to July you need to fill out an 'employment' form too - just details your employer, your earnings and tax paid etc. Again, really straightforward if you have your P60 from them - you should get one in April/May if not already and you take all the info directly from that.

MaryP0p1 Wed 13-Apr-05 07:26:36

Yes Bonkers thats right.

Well done. The first one is always the hardest.

Bugsy2 Wed 13-Apr-05 16:15:46

The other thing to do Bonkerz is phone the IR up and get free advice from them.
I hate doing mine. Good luck.

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