2013 Highlights of Budget – Baby Budgets

I keep seeing adverts on the Internet promising that you can lose weight with one simple rule.  Well I’m going to give you one simple rule to double your turnover.  Just put the word Baby in front of your products.

Budget

I read somewhere that the cost of raising a child to the age of 21 is an eye watering £221,000.  I haven’t seen how this is broken down but I would guess that at least 50% can be attributed to the crap that is bought in the first year.

Being an accountant Mrs TTF is normally rational and prudent but put a “baby”nose clearing pipette in front of her and its straight in the basket. For the uninitiated babies cannot blow their noses but equally they don’t like having plastic objects stuck up their hooter!  The patented nose clearer is therefore festering in a draw whilst I bite my lip about my TV budget deficit.

I would like to think that when I share my worldly knowledge people take note.  My friends have just been blessed with a baby and they are oblivious to my advice.  They have been to every baby shop that exists.  Mothercare, Mamma & Pappas, Kiddicare etc.  The “essentials” that they have bought include:

A baby sling: you soon discover that you need to have five hands and a spare three hours to get the baby into the sling.  Your back is then subjected to an extra stone waiving around in front of you.  If you are like me then it will be thrown in the cupboard under the stairs after a month.

Bottle Warmer:  This seems a great idea, pop the bottle in and wait for it to warm.  This is until you are staggering downstairs at 3am and have to wait twice as long as just putting the bottle in a cup of hot water.  They say a watched kettle never boils well this is also true of bottle warmers especially when an infant is screaming in your eardrum…..another addition to the storage area.

All of which are a waste of money.  If I was managing their budget I would invest in lots of vests and sheets as the amount of liquid that projects from a baby is comparable to the Southend estuary and probably as sanitary.  Sorry Southend but you shouldn’t have deprived us the chance to go to Wembley!

But balancing a baby budget is nothing compared to what George Osborne has on his plate.  So what were the budget highlights today?

THE TAX BIT – THE BUDGET TODAY

So amongst all the Punch and Judy jeers and cheers what tax announcements were made which impacts on the everyday person:

1.  Employment Allowance

If you employ people in your business then you currently have to pay employers National Insurance at the rate of 13.8% on their salaries above £144 per week.

From April 2014 all businesses will be entitled to a new £2,000 employment allowance which will be offset against their NIC bill.  This will enable businesses to take on new employees at a considerably lower rate.

2.  Personal Allowance

The amount that you can earn free of income tax will increase to £10,000 from April 2014.  Although this increase was expected it has been moved forward a year which will be welcome news to low and middle earners.

3. Child Care

Currently the main tax relief for childcare is provided through childcare vouchers .  This system will be phased out from Autumn 2015.

It will be replaced with a tax-free childcare scheme which will provide for childcare costs up to £1,200 for each child.  This will be available to working families so long as neither parent earns over £150,000 and do not receive certain benefits.

If you are currently receiving childcare vouchers you will have the choice of swapping to the new scheme or staying with the current system.  If only one parent works staying on the existing scheme seems the most logical thing to do.

4.  Fuel Duty

It was intended that there would be an increase in fuel duty levied on petrol and diesel of 1.89p from April 2013.  Fuel duty has now been frozen and the intended rises will now not go ahead.

Allegedly this will save an average of £7 every time you fill up at the pump!

5.  Seed EIS

As explained in a previous post Seed EIS is a great way of raising finance for your small company.

Initially the capital gains tax holiday only related to gains realised in the 2012/13 tax year.  The budget has granted an extension to this relief but only 50% of  gains incurred in 2013/14 will be exempt if reinvested into a qualifying company.

Whilst you ponder the above can I ask if anyone wants to buy a slightly used patented nose clearer?

 

By Peter Cross

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