Compliance & Tax
HOMES OR HOUSES LTD is committed to ensuring that it has adequate controls to counter money laundering activities and terrorist financing activities, in line with Statutory Instrument No.692 Financial Services, The Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing and Transfer of Funds (information on the Payer) Regulations 2017.
HOMES OR HOUSES LTD are registered with HMRC for anti-money laundering supervision under the Money Laundering Regulations 2017. Risk sensitive policies and procedures have been established in order to anticipate and prevent money laundering and terrorist financing.
A risk sensitive or risk-based approach is where businesses assess the risk of customers laundering money through their business. Whilst HOMES OR HOUSES LTD take the starting point that most customers will not launder money, we do identify criteria that may indicate a higher risk of money laundering – e.g. where there is no face-to-face meeting to establish identity.
HOMES OR HOUSES LTD is committed to staff training in anti-money laundering legislation.
HOMES OR HOUSES LTD has a Money Laundering Reporting Officer whose responsibility is to receive internal reports and who will forward reports to National Crime Agency as necessary.
It is HOMES OR HOUSES LTD policy that all landlords, tenants, vendors and purchasers must be identified fully with a minimum of two forms of ID, evidence of identity being photographic and also evidence of residence e.g. a utility bill dated in the last three months.
Should a face to face meeting not take place then enhanced due diligence procedures will need to be adopted by asking for additional information or evidence to establish the customer’s identity and ensuring that the documents supplied are certified. It would also be prudent to ensure that any first payments are made to a bank account in the customer’s name.
If the verification of the customer’s identity is done by documents this should be based on:
A government issued document with the customer’s full name and photo with either the customer’s date of birth or residential address such as:
- a valid passport
- a valid photo card driving licence
- a national identity card
- a firearm certificate
- an identity card issued by the Electoral Office for Northern Ireland
Where the customer doesn’t have one of the above documents, or the customer doesn’t meet the criteria in our risk assessment, we will require the following:
- a government issued document (without a photo) which includes the customer’s full name and also secondary evidence of the customer’s address, for example an old style driving licence or recent evidence of entitlement to state or local authority funded benefit such as housing benefit, council tax benefit, pension, tax credit
- secondary evidence of the customer’s address (not downloaded from the internet) for example a utility bill, bank, building society or credit union statement or a most recent mortgage statement
For customers other than private individuals
For customers who are not private individuals, such as corporate customers and private companies, the business must obtain information that is relevant e.g. company registration number, registered address and evidence that the individuals have the authority to act for the company – a search at Companies House will reveal details of directors and company secretary. The above requirements for documentation will be applied to all shareholders holding 25% or more of a business.
Suspicious Activity Reporting
A report should be made if a member of staff/ the nominated officer thinks that there is a possibility, which is more than fanciful, that a person is or has been engaged in money laundering or terrorist financing. The report should be made to the HOMES OR HOUSES LTD Money Laundering Reporting Officer who, should they be satisfied that there are grounds to suspect money laundering or terrorism, will make a Suspicious Activity Report (SAR) to the National Crime Agency (NCA)
What is Suspicious Activity?
This list is by no means exhaustive but includes:
- Reluctance to provide details of their identity
- Customer is trying to use intermediaries to hide their identity or involvement
- There appears to be no genuine reason for the customer using the business’s services
- Money is paid by a third party who does not appear to be connected with the customer
- The customer requests payment to a third party who has no apparent connection with the customer
- A cash transaction is unusually large, and the customer will not disclose the source of funds.
- A transaction is carried out for less than market value with an unconnected person
- Should a report be made then it is important that this fact, and any information about the transaction in question, is kept confidential
- The following records are required to be kept for 5 years:
- Copies of, or references to, the evidence obtained of a customer’s identity for five years after the end of the customer relationship, or five years from the date when the transaction was completed.
- Supporting records relating to a customer relationship or occasional transaction for five years from the date when the transaction was completed.
- The purpose for keeping these records is to demonstrate the business’s compliance with the regulations and to aid any resulting investigations.
HOW YOU PAY TAX ON RENTAL INCOME ON RESIDENTIAL PROPERTY IN THE UK
You can receive your rent either:
- in full and pay tax through your annual self-assessment – if HMRC approves you to do this (see below)
- with tax already deducted by your letting agent or your tenant at source. If you want to pay tax on your rental income through annual self-assessment and not by deduction at source then you are required to complete a Self-Assessment form annually and also complete form NRL1 and return it to the HMRC. If they then give approval to us, as your managing agent, to pay rent gross of Tax, for all future years you will need to declare your rental income in your Self- Assessment tax return. HMRC will not approve your application if your taxes aren’t up to date, for example if you are late with your tax returns or payments. Each person owning the property or properties is required to apply as an individual.A non-resident landlord approval number is granted to each UK property owner who is non resident or a foreign national. Only one number is issued per person and is applied across all properties for calculating UK income from rental properties. This number is for life and there is no requirement to apply for additional properties.To assist you can either:Arrange this yourself – Go to the HMRC website and complete an application online.
You will need to have all your details available, including BTL property addresses and your personal details. You must notify us of progress of the application as we are instructed by HMRC to withhold 20% of your rent until the approval is granted, to enable this amount to be offset against future income tax liability if approval is not granted.
Ask Homes or Houses to refer you to an accountant, who will complete the registration for you, they can also then complete your annual self-assessment for you and we will work them to provide all financial details pertaining to your property to enable them to do so. The fee for this service is:
- £60 (inclusive of VAT) for registration per person.
- £99 for annual self-assessment completion and submission per person.The accountant will ensure the application is swift and followed up to ensure approval. They will pass the approval number to you and to us with your approval and will be in touch when your first or next self-assessment is due. You will deal directly with the accountant.
Frequently Asked Questions
From April 1 2016, anyone purchasing an additional/second property will have to pay an additional 3 per cent stamp duty. The changes apply to companies and individuals no matter how many properties you are purchasing.
Currently freehold property purchases involving transactions less than £40,000 don’t need to pay SDLT or tell HMRC about freehold land and property transactions with a total chargeable consideration of less than £40,000. But the total chargeable consideration includes any linked transactions so caution is advised.
Click Here to download the frequently asked question’s PDF regarding Capital Gains Tax produced by the HMRC.
Click Here to download the shortened version of the frequently asked question’s PDF regarding Stamp Duty Tax produced by the HMRC.
ANTI-MONEY LAUNDERING REQUIREMENTS
Due to a tightening on Anti-Money-Laundering regulations by UK Estate agents, Homes or Houses are now required to provide the vending agents with the following certified documents upon acceptance of an offer to purchase on a property. Below is specified criteria that all property purchaser is now required to meet.
PROOF OF IDENTITY
The primary form of identification must bear a photograph and signature. Copies must also be certified as a true copy of the original, and must be valid, up to date and be signed by the holder.
- Full UK or foreign passport that has the Machine-Readable Zone
- Full UK or foreign photocard driving licence
- Photocard national identity card that has the Machine-Readable Zone
PROOF OF ADDRESS
The second form of identification must confirm the purchasers permanent residential address.
- Letter/bill from utility company (less than 3 months old) or a water bill, which must relate to the current charging period). The letter you receive must confirm you receive a service from the company and cannot be printed from the internet. Mobile phone bills are not accepted.
- UK council tax bill (for the current year)
- Full UK photocard driving licence bearing residential address (if not already used as your proof of identity)
- UK or foreign bank credit card / bank statement (dated within the last three months and not printed from the internet)
- UK mortgage statement (dated within the last 12 months and not printed from the internet).
We are unable to accept utility bills printed off the internet. Online bank statements may only be accepted as ‘Proof of Address’ if stamped and certified bearing the account holder’s address. Mobile telephone bills, store card statements and any documents showing a “care of address” or non- residential address cannot be accepted.
CERTIFICATION OF DOCUMENTS
Documents can be certified by: (Please note that individuals within the above categories in most countries are acceptable but exceptions may apply.)
- A director, manager or bank counter staff of a bank or an authorised credit or financial institution.
- An Embassy, consulate or high commission officer in the country of issue.
- A qualified lawyer or attorney registered with the relevant national professional body in the jurisdiction of country of issue.
- A qualified accountant registered with the relevant national professional body in the jurisdiction of country of issue.
- A notary public, a member of the judiciary, a senior civil servant or a serving police officer in the jurisdiction of country of issue.
The certifier should provide the ‘certification’ directly on the copy of the document, providing the following information:
- Print (in capitals), Sign and Date the copy document
- Clearly indicate his/her position or capacity
- Provide his/her contact details, including the name and address of the company/institution that they represent and any registration numbers if applicable.
- The certifier must state “I certify this is a true copy (and true likeness if photo present) of the original document.”
Please note that independent certification is HCA requirement (Homes & Communities Agency) and we may have no option but to return documents that are not certified in accordance with the guidelines.
WHAT IS ‘ANTI MONEY LAUNDERING – AML’
Anti-money laundering (AML) refers to a set of procedures, laws, and regulations designed to stop the practice of generating income through illegal actions. Though anti money laundering laws cover a relatively limited number of transactions and criminal behaviours, their implications are far-reaching. For example, AML regulations require institutions issuing credit or allowing customers to open accounts to complete due- diligence procedures to ensure they are not aiding in money-laundering activities. The onus to perform these procedures is on the institutions, not on the criminals or the government.