The 6 Most Unusual Freelancer Expenses

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June 16, 2017
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When it comes to self-employed benefits, few rank higher than the tax you can claw back for expenses. The nature of your business demands a certain standard of results: the tools and arrangements to meet it, in many cases, class as an investment.

But it’s not always straightforward. Hence, we’ve analysed six of the oddest, subtle expenses on the freelancer market. Each orbits a different industry, just to give a semblance of what you may be missing, wherever your talent lies…

1. Chair fees for hairdressers

Every day, hundreds of self-employed hairdressers turn up at a salon, choosing to base themselves there for convenience’s sake. To do so, they rent a chair, paying the owner of the venue for the privilege. However, such fees are a classifiable expense, and can shave a lot of cash from yearly tax returns.

2. Sacramental objects for ministers of religion

Ministers of religion – or MoRs, as they’re known – have a complete separate expense list, with its own documents, to bolster their activity in a parish. When giving Mass, for instance, a Catholic priest can claim money back for the bread, wine and holy robes they’ll employ for the ritual.

3. Subscriptions for trades people 

How does a manual freelancer refine their techniques? Simple: amidst networking and online research, they can subscribe to an industry magazine, gleaning insights that are going to keep them ahead of their competitors. If you’re in this sector, you’re entitled to get a tax break on any trade material you order through the mail. HMRC have termed it a direct business advantage.

4. Promotional activity for artists

Actually ‘making it’ as a self-employed artist is, by all accounts, quite hard. Prospective painters, sculptors and multi-media creatives have to get their work before as many pairs of eyes as they can. The UK government allows professional photography to be tax-free, as long as it’s marketing an art portfolio. The same is true of exhibition costs, too.

5. Vehicle parts for mechanics

For the freelance road service professional, there’s going to be a lot to swap or affix when solving car trouble. Customers might need a replacement chassis, wheel, engine component, brake pad… The list goes on and on. Luckily, mechanics can offset the price of any remedial parts with an expense form. Over time, this’ll form a significant cash figure that’d otherwise be lost to bad bookkeeping.

6. Editing software for camera experts

Capturing something on camera or film is one of the most diverse freelance professions out there. But it’s also expensive to get your hands on the right software, which is why it’s important to claim back the tax relief you’re due when it comes to your Self Assessment tax return.

To say that we’ve hardly scratched the surface is an understatement… These claims are more like a soft tickle on the body of freelancer expenses and tax guidelines. For more information, and to hire a team of freelancer accountants that can stick with you through it all, call Bright Ideas Accountancy on 0161 451 3940 or email info@biaccountancy.com.

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