23 Jul 2018  •  Practice Management  •  3min read By  • John Clarke

How dentists can take the heat off their summer tax bill

The recent mini heatwave may have been welcomed by the majority of Britons, however the summer months typically coincide with when businesses most feel the strain on their finances due to declining revenues. For some self-employed dentists, the worry associated with paying their annual tax liabilities has been rising, and with the 31st July self-assessment payment deadline looming, some will have concerns about their cash flow.

According to figures taken from the Dental Earnings and Expenses Estimates (EEQs) published by NHS Digital in September 2017, taxable income for NHS dentists has reduced by 35% in real terms since 2006, with real incomes for a practice-owning dentist falling by more than £45,000 over the last decade to an average of £69,200 in 2015/16.

Increased overheads such as staff wages, rent and remaining compliant with legislative changes mean that the cost of running a dental practice is going up year-on-year. Subjecting your finances to greater scrutiny can help to ease the pressure of managing your tax obligations but sometimes the hardest part is knowing where to start.

Fortunately, there are specialist financial providers and independent financial consultants who offer dentists complimentary ‘business health checks’ which delve into the bigger picture surrounding your business’s running costs.

“The business health checks can be structured to focus on the things that matter to you the most and can cover a multitude of areas.”

The business health checks can be structured to focus on the things that matter to you the most and can cover a multitude of areas. These include, but are not limited to, offering advice on how to secure funding to grow or maintain your practice, pinpointing key issues around succession and continuity planning, as well as identifying potential tax liability savings in the future.

In the short-term, alleviating the burden of your impending tax bill can be an effective way to take the heat off any financial pressures you are facing this summer. Online digital services can be accessed 24 hours a day and applicants are guided through a simple and fast application process, making it easily accessible for busy dentists. Once your application has been approved, repayments at competitive rates can be conveniently made over six or twelve months and some alternative finance providers will even pay the funds on your behalf directly to HMRC. What could be simpler?

At some point in your career, you may be faced with an unexpected tax bill. However, seeking financial advice from trusted specialists and alternative sources of funding can enable you to take the power back into your hands when it comes to taking control of your finances, ensuring you can minimise cash flow concerns and gain better predictability over your monthly expenditure.

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