As the 5th of April fast approaches, let’s take a look at the best way to get the most out of your annual allowances before the end of the tax year. There are very few allowances which can be rolled over into the next period, so it’s a good time to weigh up the options available to you.
The ISA Allowance
Contributing to an ISA is one of the most tax-efficient ways to invest your money, with no income tax or capital gains tax due on any gains made.
For the 2020-21 tax year, the ISA allowance is set at £20,000, meaning you can invest anywhere up to this amount in either cash, investment, or lifetime ISAs throughout the period. If you haven’t yet used up your allowance but are thinking of contributing to an ISA, remember that the allowance won’t carry over to the next tax year.
If you have children and are looking to put something away for the future for them, then a Junior ISA could be a good option to help you invest on their behalf – you can contribute up to £9,000 in 2020-21 per child, and it’s possible to continue putting money away in a Junior ISA until the child reaches the age of 18.
Another popular way to put money as is by investing into a pension fund. The Annual Allowance for pension contributions for 2020-21 is £40,000, so you can contribute up to 100% of your yearly earnings (capped at a limit of £40,000) and receive tax relief on whatever you contribute.
The tax relief available to each individual is based on the tax band that they fall into. So for basic rate taxpayers, this relief is 20%, for higher rate taxpayers 40%, and finally a 45% rate is available to those taxed at the top rate.
There are a wide variety of pension schemes available to individuals, and its worth nothing that even if you are an employee already contributing into a company pension scheme through your payslip, you can still make voluntary contributions to the fund to make the most of this allowance.
Capital Gains Tax is payable on the sale of certain assets, such as property, shares, artwork, or any other assets that may increase in value over time. The annual tax-free CGT allowance for 2020-21 is £12,300, so any gains under this amount won’t face any additional tax bills.
If you are considering disposing of any assets and have not used up your allowance for this year, then it is a good time to think about doing so before the tax year ends.
Bounce-Back Loan deadline
The deadline for applying for the government-backed Bounce Back Loan Scheme (BBLS) for businesses is the 31st of March 2021, so there is not much time left to apply if you were intending to do so. This deadline also applies to top-ups of existing loans that were taken via the BBLS. You can find more information on the bounce-back loan here, including links to lenders.