HMRC internal manual

Tax Credits Technical Manual

TCTM04006 - Income: Property Income

The Tax Credits (Definition and Calculation of Income) Regulations 2002,Reg. 11

Property income is any income chargeable to income tax as a property business as defined in Part 3 of the Income Tax (Trading and Other Income) Act 2005 (ITTOIA).

Property Income is defined in the income tax legislation as income from rent or other receipts, from estates and any interest or rights in or over land in the United Kingdom, taxable by virtue of Part 3 of ITTOIA.

Normally income from property is not trading income even if a person works full-time running the rental business.

Exceptionally, the provision of services by a landlord can amount to a trade distinct from the rental business. Here, neither the income nor the expenditure relating to these services will be included in the property income figure but should be assessed as trading income (see TCTM04004)

Prior to April 2011 there were special tax rules concerning the commercial letting of furnished holiday accommodation, as although chargeable to income tax as property income, some of the tax treatments available to traders were available to qualifying landlords. From April 2011 any income from this source should be treated as property income.

Property income does not include any profits or gains:

  • treated as nil by section 791 to 794 of ITTOIA; or
  • excluded from profit or gains by section 795 to 798 of ITTOIA.

This means that income which is exempt from tax by virtue of the “rent-a-room” scheme should be disregarded.

Where the property business makes a loss and tax relief for that loss is given under sections 118 (carry forward against subsequent property business profits) and 119 (how relief works) of the Income Tax Act 2007, the total amount of that relief is applied when calculating the total amount of property income. In practice, this means that the loss is carried forward and set against profits from the same source (i.e. property income) of the following tax year.

Alternatively, where a person is entitled to property loss relief by satisfying the requirements of section 120 of the Income Tax Act 2007 and the amount of that relief exceeds the property income or foreign income (TCTM04007) for tax credits purposes the amount of that excess relief shall be deducted from the total income for tax credits purposes (see TCTM04003). Details of how property income is taxed can be found in the Property Income Manual. However, see the Business Income Manual (BIM41015) for the circumstances in which rents received in respect of sub-let business premises may be included in trading income in Part 2 of ITTOIA.

Calculating Property Income

Prior to 6 April 2017

The figure used for tax credit purposes should be the same as that agreed for income tax purposes.

Post 6 April 2017

Following changes to tax legislation, the way a person’s income tax liability is calculated in respect of their rental income no longer reflects that used for the purposes of tax credits.

When calculating their income tax liability a person will only be able to include a percentage of their finance costs (e.g. mortgage interest) as an allowable expense.  The percentage rate will decrease over a period of four years until no relief will be available from 2020/21.  These rates will be applied as follows:

2017/18           75%

2018/19           50%

2019/20           25%

2020/21           Nil

For the purposes of tax credits, a person will still be able to deduct 100% of their finance costs when calculating their allowable expenses for property income.


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Deductions in computing profits from Property Income

Generally, expenses can be deducted as long as they are allowable expenses for income tax.