Offsetting the cost of a £5,000 property seminar.
Question I have just attended a £5,000 property investment training course. I guess I can offset this entire cost against my future property rental income?
The short answer to your question is: if it is wholly and exclusively for the purposes of the trade presently carried on by the taxpayer, then it is allowable.
Here is what the Inland Revenue has to say about the matter:
'Expenditure on training courses attended by the proprietor of a business with the purpose of up-dating his or her skills and professional expertise is normally revenue expenditure, which is deductible from profits of the business provided it is incurred wholly and exclusively for the purposes of the trade or profession carried on by the individual at the time the training is undertaken'.
So what does that exactly mean?
Well, if you are already a property investor, with a portfolio, and attend the course to update your investment skills, then you can offset the entire cost.
You can offset the cost as you will be regarded as updating your skills.
However, if you want to start investing in property and attend a course to learn how to do this, then you will not be able to offset the costs against the rental income.
You can not offset the cost as you will not be 'updating' your skills in your current profession as you are effectively learning a new profession.
A word of warning - If you do decide to make a claim, then it could well trigger an investigation.
This is because the Inland Revenue does keep a close eye on large amounts being claimed, so be warned!
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