What Expenses Can I Include in My Self Assessment Tax Return?

You’re self-employed which means you have essential costs to keep your business running.

You can deduct these costs called ‘allowable expenses’, to work out your taxable profit but remember if you’re using the £1,000 tax-free trading allowance you can’t claim any additional expenses.

Allowable expenses include office, property and equipment, travel including cars & vans, staff any legal and financial costs and marketing and subscriptions.

You can’t claim for anything you spend on personal things such as your home and accommodation, food shopping, clothing, holidays – nor anything you buy for you and your family.

You may want to use simplified expenses – this means you claim a flat rate instead of working out the actual costs.
For example for car travel you can claim 45p/mile up to 10 000 miles & then 25p/mile over this amount.

If your income is above £85 000 (the VAT threshold), you’ll need to list each expense individually under the appropriate heading in the tax return.
This also applies if you didn’t trade a full year but would have earned this amount or more if you had for example your income for six months was £50,000 so in 12 months it would have been £100,000
If your income is less than £85,000, it’s up to you whether you give HMRC your total amount of expenses or list them individually.

It’s important you keep records and proof of your business costs – you’ll need them to complete your self-assessment tax return & sometimes HMRC ask to see these.
You don’t need to send nor attach your receipts with your return.
You can find more information about self-assessment on gov.uk