Can someone confirm the figure HMI allow for the use of a home office (e.g. phone/computer etc). I seem to remember it was £3 week if you didn't want to do the whole working out a percentage thing with bills.
There is no official allowance for the self employed, but employees who are required to work from home can be paid up to £4 per week (prior to April 2012 it was £3 per week) without any further records so it is reasonable to assume that HMRC will accept this amount for the self employed too.
However if you work a substantial amount of time at home the expenses you can claim may be substantial - not just phone bills but heat and light, water rates, council tax, and (often most significantly) mortgage interest. A good accountant will help you work out the correct amount.
Ok, that's helpful, thank you. I work about 8 hours home a week, so think an amount per week would cover it better than working it all out.
Something you have written makes me ask though, DH works from home 1-2 days per week. He is not required to, although he officially has 1 day work from home as part of a flexible contract. Would he be able to claim for that, or part of, or is it only if you have to work from home?
"Ok, that's helpful, thank you. I work about 8 hours home a week, so think an amount per week would cover it better than working it all out."
Depends what else you use that room for. If the room is 1/8 of your house and you only use it for doing the domestic paperwork 2 hours a week you may be able to claim 10% of your mortgage interest and council tax!
"Would he be able to claim for that, or part of, or is it only if you have to work from home?"
As with any allowable expense, it must be incurred necessarily in the performance of the duties, and because he chooses to work from home it does not pass this test I am afraid.