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HMRC internal manual

National Minimum Wage Manual

Accommodation and accommodation offset: considering the charge for living accommodation against the offset

It is usually straightforward to identify the charge (NMWM10160) for living accommodation (NMWM10110) which is to be considered against the accommodation offset (NMWM10030) as such charges will be identifiable from the employer’s records for the respective pay reference period. For example, the charges may be shown on payslips as deductions.

However, occasionally it may be necessary to adjust or apportion the charge for accommodation in order to correctly determine the pay for national minimum wage purposes. This will most likely apply where:

  • the charge for the accommodation covers a period which differs from the pay reference period, such as weekly paid worker has monthly rent charges,
  • the worker is performing time work and has an absence from work which meets the specific conditions which require an apportioned cost for accommodation to be applied,
  • the charge for the accommodation is distributed across multiple occupants.

The following scenarios and comments are provided to help illustrate some of the issues which may arise.

NMWM10240 Scenario 1 - Payments for rent not aligning with pay reference periods
NMWM10250 Scenario 2 - Time work being performed with paid absence
NMWM10260 Scenario 3 - Accommodation charges apply to multiple occupants