AM Online

Tax tips for dealer owners

Owner-managers are uniquely placed to cut their tax bill. So as the tax year-end approaches, review your finances to catch the best cash-saving opportunities. Smith & Williamson reveals its top ten tips.

1. Review reward package to get the most tax efficient mix of salary, dividends and bonuses.

2. Consider further pension contributions. People with personal pensions can now base pension contributions on their earnings from any one of the current or previous five years.

3. Cut this year's car tax by planning additional trips to meet business mileage thresholds of 2,500 and 18,000. However, from 6 April 2002, exhaust emissions rather than business miles will determine car tax for business drivers so you might consider switching to a 'greener' car - or else buy your car privately.

4. Consider bringing forward capital expenditure to accelerate capital allowances. Remember that 100% first year allowances are due on energy saving technology and for information technology for small businesses.

5. Think about the timing of the sale of assets subject to capital gains tax (CGT). By delaying the sale date, individuals could also delay paying the tax bill for a whole year and get extra taper tax relief. The exchange of contracts, not completion, generally counts as the sale date.

6. Maximise spouse's CGT and income tax allowances by transferring shareholdings or other assets to lower earning spouse.

7. Check IR35 will not affect you, particularly if you have just a few clients.

8. Update your will and consider IHT-free gifts, eg each person can make gifts of £3,000 pa without giving rise to IHT, plus £250 pa to any number of people, and wedding gifts of £1,000 upwards.

9. Check your tax coding for 2002/03, in particular for company car benefits and children's tax credit, if applicable.

10. Finally, consider giving to charity via quoted shares, loan notes or units in authorised unit trusts, rather than cash as this can further reduce your tax bill.

For a more detailed year-end checklist see

If you are not a registered user your comment will go to AM for approval before publishing. To avoid this requirement please register or login.

Comment as guest

Login  /  Register


No comments have been made yet.