budget

Updated for April 2021

The Salary Calculator has been updated with the tax rates which take effect from 6th April 2021. Some of these rates are still subject to confirmation by the relevant governments, but the calculator will be updated if any of them change.

The biggest change is the introduction of “Plan 4” student loan repayments, for Scottish students. If your undergraduate loan is administered in Scotland and due for repayment you will start repaying under Plan 4 from April 2021, even if you have been previously repaying under Plan 1. Those already repaying their loans will switch from Plan 1 to Plan 4 repayments in April. This change does not affect students in England, Wales or Northern Ireland, and nor does it affect repayment of postgraduate loans.

If you would like to see the effects of this change, and any others from April 2021, try out The 2021 Salary Calculator by choosing the “2021/22” tax year from the drop-down box.

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None of the content on this website, including blog posts, comments, or responses to user comments, is offered as financial advice. Figures used are for illustrative purposes only.

Plans for re-starting the economy

It has been a turbulent few months for many of us, with jobs being cut, furloughing schemes, working from home and closure of many businesses (small and large). Last week, Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced a number of measures which are designed to help us along the road to recovery. It is going to take several months (or even longer) and things may never quite be the same – but here are a few of the measures which have been announced:

A cut in VAT on hospitality – restaurants and hotels will see the VAT on their goods reduced from 20% to 5%. For consumers, it is possible that this will mean lower prices but businesses are under no obligation to pass this saving on. They may keep their prices the same and use the VAT saving to try to repair some of the damage caused by their enforced closure over the last few months, or to try to allow for fewer customers as social distancing regulations mean that they can’t seat as many people as before.

A temporary removal of stamp duty on house purchases under £500,000 – if you were planning to move house before March 2021, this may well save you a significant amount of money. Previously, any house sold for more than £125,000 attracted stamp duty (often thousands or tens of thousands of pounds) which the buyer had to pay on top of the purchase price. Until March of next year, the threshold has been increased to £500,000, in an attempt to encourage people to buy and re-energise the housing market.

A bonus paid to employers who retain furloughed employees – if an employer keeps an employee who was furloughed on the payroll until the end of January 2021, they will be eligible for a one-off £1000 bonus. This is to encourage employers to keep people on and prevent unemployment, even if business doesn’t pick up immediately now that lockdown has been loosened.

There were several schemes announced which are intended to encourage employers to employ 16-24 year olds.

A full run-down of the measures announced is available from the BBC.

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Wednesday, July 15th, 2020 Economy, Jobs No Comments

April 2020 calculations

The Salary Calculator has been updated with the tax rates which currently stand to take effect from 6th April 2020. I say “currently”, because there is a Budget taking place on Wednesday 11th March and it is possible that some changes to tax rates or allowances will be announced. If this is the case, the calculator will be updated with the latest values as soon as possible following the Budget.

At the moment, no changes to the tax-free personal allowance or income tax rates have been announced (apart from in Scotland, where some tax thresholds have been increased slightly). However, the threshold for when you start paying National Insurance has increased, meaning that National Insurance contributions will be reduced by up to £104 per year.

Those repaying their undergraduate student loans will also find that the repayment threshold has increased – for Plan 1 it will be £19,390, and Plan 2 £26,575 per year. Although this increase will reduce the payments you make in each payslip, it will of course mean that it takes longer to repay your loan.

If you’d like to see how the changes will affect you, head over to The Salary Calculator and remember to choose 2020/21 from the Tax Year drop-down box.

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April 2019 tax rates

The Salary Calculator has been updated with the tax rates which will take effect from 6th April 2019. There is a significant increase in the tax-free Personal Allowance from £11,850 to £12,500 per year, and outside of Scotland the threshold from 20% basic rate to 40% higher rate income tax has been increased to £50,000. Scottish tax thresholds are different from the rest of the UK, current information suggests that they will not increase as much as the UK rates will.

There have also been increases in the thresholds for Plan 1 and Plan 2 Student Loan repayments, so those paying off their loans will find their repayments lowered in the new year.

You can try out the April 2019 tax rates for yourself by choosing “2019 / 20” in the Tax Year drop-down on The Salary Calculator. You can also see a side-by-side comparison of 2018 and 2019 with the 2018 and 2019 income tax comparison page.

The calculator has been updated with the best information currently available – if any of the details change before the start of the tax year the calculator will be updated to reflect those changes.

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April 2018 tax rates

The Salary Calculator has been updated, and the new tax information which takes effect from 6th April 2018 has been applied. The personal allowance has been increased from £11,500 to £11,850, meaning you can earn an extra £350 tax-free per year. The thresholds between tax bands have also been increased.

In Scotland, new tax bands have been introduced, making income tax calculations quite different from in the rest of the UK. There are 5 tax rates, 19%, 20%, 21%, 41% and 46%, compared to just three in the rest of the UK (20%, 40% and 45%). The result of this difference is that lower earners North of the border can save as much as £20 per year compared to the rest of the UK, but with higher earners potentially paying quite a bit more in Scotland than they would if they were based elsewhere in the UK. The point at which Scottish earners go from paying less to paying more tax is a salary of about £26,000.

You can try out the April 2018 tax rates for yourself by choosing “2018 / 19” in the Tax Year drop-down on The Salary Calculator. You can also see a side-by-side comparison of 2017 and 2018 with the 2017 and 2018 income tax comparison page.

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