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Local small band making a little money - tax question?


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Hi :) I'm part of a small band, and we make a little money selling our records, gigs etc. The money we spend on recording, practice sessions etc is way more than what we get but I'm still intrigued - does this money count as taxable income, and should we be getting taxed on it? This tax calculator website I've had a look at says I'm just over the first tax band (full time student, part time work) so should be taxed on any income I get. Is this even worth putting brainpower into? Never really had more than one point of income so have no idea how all this works :P

Thanks!

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Your focus is wrong, instead of thinking of the money you're making trying thinking of the expenses you occur. For example if buy a train ticket to travel for a gig that's a work expense which is deductible from your taxes, keep in mind it doesn't work as spend £50 get £50 back tho.

You'd have to register as self employed/2nd job and complete a self assessment form every year. You'll probably end up with a tiny tax rebate once a year but every little helps.

Edited by jump
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My dad played in local country bands for most of his life, more a hobby that anything, made a little profit but most of it went on beer.

Someone ratted him out to Inland Revenue a few months before he was thinking of knocking it on the head, got hit with a big old tax bill and threats of imprisonment if he didn't pay up.

 

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7 hours ago, aGiles said:

Hi :) I'm part of a small band, and we make a little money selling our records, gigs etc. The money we spend on recording, practice sessions etc is way more than what we get but I'm still intrigued - does this money count as taxable income, and should we be getting taxed on it? This tax calculator website I've had a look at says I'm just over the first tax band (full time student, part time work) so should be taxed on any income I get. Is this even worth putting brainpower into? Never really had more than one point of income so have no idea how all this works :P

Thanks!

You're not really earning if your expenses are more than your earnings.

The way it used to be dealt with is that casual earnings from an employer could go in your tax code, but you had to register as self employed for self generated income.

HMRC have been trying to take as many people as possible out of self assessment, however, so now there's this:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/tax-free-allowances-on-property-and-trading-income

Trading allowance

The trading allowance is a tax exemption of up to £1,000 a year for individuals with trading income from:

  • self-employment
  • casual services, for example, babysitting or gardening (Helpsheet 325 has more information about other taxable income)
  • hiring personal equipment, for example, power tools

If your annual gross income from these is £1,000 or less, you don’t need to tell HMRC, unless:

You must tell HMRC if you have:

 

Self employed musicians would be classed as having trading income:

https://www.musiciansunion.org.uk/Home/Advice/Your-Career/Tax/Tax-Savings-Guide-Introduction

As jump says, as you have other earnings, you can voluntarily register for SA to get a rebate, the full gov link goes into all that.

When in doubt, contact HMRC and they'll check the SA criteria for you.

 

Edited by feral chile
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On 7/24/2018 at 2:59 PM, jump said:

Your focus is wrong, instead of thinking of the money you're making trying thinking of the expenses you occur. For example if buy a train ticket to travel for a gig that's a work expense which is deductible from your taxes, keep in mind it doesn't work as spend £50 get £50 back tho.

You'd have to register as self employed/2nd job and complete a self assessment form every year. You'll probably end up with a tiny tax rebate once a year but every little helps.

 

On 7/24/2018 at 9:43 PM, feral chile said:

You're not really earning if your expenses are more than your earnings.

The way it used to be dealt with is that casual earnings from an employer could go in your tax code, but you had to register as self employed for self generated income.

HMRC have been trying to take as many people as possible out of self assessment, however, so now there's this:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/tax-free-allowances-on-property-and-trading-income

Trading allowance

The trading allowance is a tax exemption of up to £1,000 a year for individuals with trading income from:

  • self-employment
  • casual services, for example, babysitting or gardening (Helpsheet 325 has more information about other taxable income)
  • hiring personal equipment, for example, power tools

If your annual gross income from these is £1,000 or less, you don’t need to tell HMRC, unless:

You must tell HMRC if you have:

 

Self employed musicians would be classed as having trading income:

https://www.musiciansunion.org.uk/Home/Advice/Your-Career/Tax/Tax-Savings-Guide-Introduction

As jump says, as you have other earnings, you can voluntarily register for SA to get a rebate, the full gov link goes into all that.

When in doubt, contact HMRC and they'll check the SA criteria for you.

 

Interesting, I'll look into contacting HMRC to figure out exactly what I should owe. I'm curious, would I be able to put the expenses for band stuff against my main income? 

 

On 7/24/2018 at 9:20 PM, Gnomicide said:

My dad played in local country bands for most of his life, more a hobby that anything, made a little profit but most of it went on beer.

Someone ratted him out to Inland Revenue a few months before he was thinking of knocking it on the head, got hit with a big old tax bill and threats of imprisonment if he didn't pay up.

Exactly what I'm trying to avoid! Any profit we make as a band is pooled together and put back into our expenses some way or another, technically none of us individually profit from it but all the money comes in and out of another account with my bank I made, which is why I'm getting a bit finicky about it! 

Thanks to all of you! :)

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7 hours ago, aGiles said:

 

Interesting, I'll look into contacting HMRC to figure out exactly what I should owe. I'm curious, would I be able to put the expenses for band stuff against my main income? 

 

 

Yes, you basically enter all your income including your paye income, then take off your allowable expenses, and pay tax on the difference.

You'd have to keep business records and complete self assessment returns, it's important to keep up to date as there are penalties.

https://www.gov.uk/expenses-if-youre-self-employed

Some advice here:

https://rsaccountancy.co.uk/2016/09/13/music-and-taxes-how-to-manage-tax-as-a-musician/

Edited by feral chile
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  • 1 month later...

My accountant said there was a case ruling a while ago and as a result, small time musicians don't need to decalre earnings, as most of the time when you add it all up, theres either a loss, or rough break even. May be worth asking a worthy accountant

 

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2 hours ago, Flounder said:

My accountant said there was a case ruling a while ago and as a result, small time musicians don't need to decalre earnings, as most of the time when you add it all up, theres either a loss, or rough break even. May be worth asking a worthy accountant

 

Yes, you only have to declare it if it's over £1000. Sometimes people can offset a loss, it depends if it's worth the hassle of completing a return or paying someone to do it for you. And with fixed penalties now, you need to be on time with any returns. 

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