Holiday Cottage News

Within the next 48 hours we will be launching a NEW special offers blog space on Which Cottage. It will allow owners to highlight any special discounts for their cottages. Please keep an eye out for this as there may be some spectacular opportunities if you are looking for self-catering properties in Scotland! Why not enjoy the stunning winter scenery in Scotland or perhaps take the chance to experience skiing a bit closer to home with many cottages based close to the Scottish ski centres? Alternatively, you may be keen to find a last minute holiday let that gives you the chance to relax and enjoy reading a book in front of a log fire! We’ll be up and running shortly so watch this space!

Looking for late availability cottages for Christmas and New Year? Look no further for a wonderful selection of self-catering cottages with festive availability throughout Scotland. Daily updates on festive availability.

HM Treasury has just announced a consultation over the tax treatment of Furnished holiday lettings.  Following the consultation the final changes will be announced at the next budget and operate from April 2011.  The main proposals are: Increasing the minimum period a property is available for letting from 140 to 210 days Increasing the minimum period over which a property is actually let to the public from 70 to 105 days Where a business qualifies as a furnished holiday lettings business under the new rules, the existing rules for Capital Gains Tax reliefs will still apply.  These include business asset roll-over relief, Entrepreneurs’ relief and relief for gift of business assets. Changing the loss relief rules so they are only available to set against future profits from that UK furnished holiday lettings business. Only allowing losses from a European qualifying furnished holiday lettings business for setting against future profits from that European qualifying furnished holiday lettings business. A European holiday letting business will cover all the countries in the European Economic Area.  The changes proposed would require the UK business to be taxed separately from the European properties. The significant change proposed is only allowing the losses of the furnished holiday letting business to be set off against future profits of the same business.  The existing rules allow losses to be set against other taxable income and can create tax repayments.  In the tax year 2008/09 there were 20,000 taxpayers who set furnished holiday letting losses against their other income. New rules for claiming tax…

Tax Rollercoaster The tax rollercoaster on Furnished Holiday Lettings continues.  The previous government had stated that the furnished holiday lettings (FHL) rules would be withdrawn with effect from 6 April 2010.  However it has been announced at the Emergency Budget that this change will now not take place. The rules will allow holiday lettings that meet certain conditions to be treated as a trade for some specific tax purposes.  This is great news for all the individuals, partnerships, trustees and companies who let furnished holiday accommodation situated within the UK or anywhere else within the European Economic Area (EEA). So what are the advantages? Income Tax advantages Losses from a qualifying Furnished Holiday Let (FHL) can be set against other taxable income in the current or previous tax year.  For a property rental not qualifying as a FHL a loss incurred can only be set against other rental income rather than all taxable income.   Profits from a FHL are treated as earnings for pension contribution purposes. Capital allowance claims for expenditure on furniture and furnishings are available on a FHL.  Such items as washing machines, kitchen equipment, bathroom and sanitary wear, central heating, furniture, furnishings and insulation will qualify for either Plant & Machinery allowances or Integral Features allowances.  The existing rules allow the first £100,000 of qualifying expenditure for Capital Allowances to obtain the “Annual Investment Allowance” and a 100% tax write off.  Currently the FHL profits or losses do not necessarily have to follow the ownership of the property.  This can have tax…

Recently added 2 bedroom self-catering holiday cottage in Scotland – overlooking a sea loch. Summer holiday availability.

We all dread going to the train station on the day of your journey – the prices can be unreal, particularly if you’re travelling with a family. Thankfully it’s very rare that you’ll have to buy your tickets on the day any more, as the Internet allows you to order the tickets in the comfort of your own home, and at far cheaper prices than would have been possible if you’d ended up queueing at the station. However, getting the cheapest tickets online can be difficult if you don’t know what you’re looking for. Here are five top tips showing you how to save significantly and enjoy far more spending money on your holiday cottage break: Know where you can buy your tickets online When most people think of buying train tickets online, The Train Line immediately comes to mind. It’s a good site, but bear in mind they add on a £1 booking fee on every transaction which will eat into the amount of money you save. National Express don’t charge this money, but their site works on the same backend as The Train Line so you can still save a fortune. Singles are normally cheaper than returns When you go on holiday you’ll normally be returning to your home within a week, or two weeks so you’re probably be looking for return tickets, but in reality these are often far more expensive than two single tickets. Returns give you more flexibility – you aren’t so limited in the number of trains you can…

Chaos in furnished holiday lets

No Comments, Holiday Cottage News, by Veronica & Anne.

As far as we are aware the fact the FHL ( furnished holiday lets) measures that were dropped from the Finance Bill have caused nothing but confusion and it’s very difficult to say what will happen. Below is a brief article from our company accountants outlining what could happen but it would appear we will have to wait until after the General Election for some clarity. Chaos in furnished holiday lets In the interests of having the Finance Bill legislation passed in time to dissolve Parliament, the measure abolishing the favourable treatment of furnished holiday lettings (FHL) has been dropped.  What is not at all clear is what will happen next. Labour have stated that the measures removed will be introduced in the next Finance Bill, immediately after the General Election.  It is not clear whether the measure could then be started with effect from 6 April 2010, or whether there would possibly be a one year delay.  One thing that is sure is that if Labour returns to power, the measure will reach the statute books very quickly.  Other parties, whilst keen to see the measure dropped from the Bill have made no clear commitment on tax breaks for this area. What may happen if another party comes to power is that alternative provisions could be introduced which allow genuine holiday letting businesses continue to qualify for the tax reliefs as a business and withdraw them for those who own a second home, who let it out and offer it to friends and family…

You’ve probably heard the term ‘staycation’ being thrown about in the last couple of years. Since the recession hit many families and couples have been finding it harder and harder to get abroad for a holiday. It’s simply been too expensive. Because of this many have decided to take ‘staycations,’ which are holidays taken within the country you reside, in parks, leisure centres and holiday cottages. Staycations offer a host of benefits to those who take them: 1) Significantly reduced travel stress associated with airports and other terminals 2) Supportive of local industries and small suppliers 3) Massively more cost-effective then holidays abroad – with the costs of air travel and transfers a 10 day family holiday could easily stretch to £5000. 4) A chance to explore your own country – every country is beautiful, and how much of the UK have you actually experienced? You wouldn’t think it immediately, but the UK is actually one of the most perfect countries for the family or couple looking to take a staycation trip together. From the misty air of the Scottish Highlands to postcard-perfect South Devon you’ll be able to visit some of the most beautiful places and stay in timeless properties full of rustic features including roaring fires and Tudor beams. And if you’re looking for an activity-rich trip you can rent holiday cottages in the UK nearby classic, charming locations that offer delights such as fishing, zip lining, pony riding and kayaking. Check out our self-catering holiday cottages in England for some immediate inspiration….

Shadow Chancellor George Osborne recently pledged to reverse Alistair Darling’s decision to abolish tax breaks for furnished holiday cottages should the Conservatives win the next general election. The decision is part of a major tourist-led package that could be worth over £1.1bn to the South West tourism. In a speech centered on the Tories’ approach to tourism, Mr. Osborne claimed that increasing the number of Britons using holiday cottages from 38 to 50% would provide an extra £6.5bn to the UK economy. Expert tax advice provided to the Shadow Treasury has apparently revealed the Tories can reverse Mr Darling’s plans in a way that is ‘fiscally neutral.’ In April last year, Darling unveiled plans to scrap valuable tax incentives for home owners renting our their properties to tourists. The plans gave owners relief on income tax, capital gains tax, inheritance tax and pension contributions. The law changes on April 1st, yet there has been significant backlash from the holiday cottage community that believes scrapping the plans will turn respectable businesses into amateurs. The Treasury has blamed European law, which prevents tax relief being given to owners of holiday homes in the UK but not to Britons renting properties abroad. The Tories’ decision should be welcome news to holiday cottage owners and Britons interested in taking more ‘staycations’ – if you’d like to find out more take a look at our holiday cottages in Ireland for some delightful inspiration direct from the Emerald Isle!

If you’ve ever used Google Street View, you’ll know it’s a pretty incredible program, allowing you to view streets throughout the UK in 360 glory. The photos are taken using specially designed cars fitted with several cameras, GPS sensors, infrared sensors and a host of other features you’d only expect Google to come out with. You’ve probably got a friend or two who claim they can be seen on Google Street View, and several more who saw the trademark cars nipping around the UK taking photos. Street View is great just to check out your favourite places and explore them from the warmth and comfort of your own home. It’s also perfect if you’re looking around for your next holiday cottage stay and want to check out the local area to ensure it’s perfect for you and your family. For fun, Google hosts an annual ceremony that awards UK streets prizes based on a nationwide poll, with selections chosen from a expert-picked shortlist of 48 locations. The poll was supported by a number of industry players including Lonely Planet, Harden’s Guide and VisitBritain. The most beautiful street in the United Kingdom was named as The Shambles, York (see the picture!). A stunning street filled with ‘ye olde’ architecture and vibrant colours The Shambles is the perfect location for couples looking for a traditional taste of England that they’ll remember for years to come. Another top rated street was Milsom Street in Bath, which won the “Best Fashion Street” category. Food maestros should check out Stockbridge…