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Why choose HGH?

Top Tax Tips for Airbnb hosts

Posted: 11th Jul 2019 by Robert Salenius Taxation

Airbnb is one of the ‘go-to’ places for affordable holiday accommodation and short-term lets. If you have a spare room it’s a great way of earning additional income; however, there are tax implications that you should be aware of.

Our tax expert, Robert Salenius, provides some helpful guidance if you are thinking about becoming an Airbnb host.

I am currently renting rooms to guests via Airbnb. Do I need to charge VAT?

Yes, if you are already VAT registered or your taxable supplies are more than £85k pa.

I am renting rooms in my own home to guests via Airbnb. Can I claim rent-a -room relief?

Yes. It was proposed that from 6 April 2019, you would need to live in the house for at least part of the time of the rental period to be able to claim the relief, but this is not the case for the time being.

What is the Rent a Room Scheme?

Rent a Room is an income tax relief which allows you to earn £7,500 tax-free each year from letting a spare room in your home.

How does it work?

The scheme applies when short-term guests stay in a furnished room or rent your whole property – as long as it is your main home and in the UK. It also applies if you have a lodger or run a B&B/guest house.
You don’t pay tax on the first £7,500 you make each year from renting out furnished accommodation in your home or your whole home (halved if you share the income with a partner or someone else). If your rental income is more than £7,500 you will need to complete a tax return and claim the relief.
If it is more than £7,500, you opt-in to the scheme and pay tax on the excess. For more information, see the Government’s Rent a Room scheme.

Are there any alternatives to the Rent a Room Scheme?

Landlords can deduct certain costs, such as letting agents’ fees, before working out how much tax to pay. You can choose not to opt-in to the Rent a Room Scheme and instead record your income and expenses on the property pages of your tax return. This can be a bigger saving in a few cases.

Is it correct that homeowners who let out rooms/properties via Airbnb won’t need to declare or pay tax on the first £1,000 they earn per year?

Yes, each person has a property income allowance of £1,000 they can use instead of deducting actual expenses. However, it cannot be used if you opt in to the Rent a Room Scheme.

If you would like further information about tax implications if you are an Airbnb host, please get in touch with a member of our Tax team:

T: 01904 655202
Or email