Don't pay more tax than you have to

We would all like to pay less tax if we could but tax is a fact of life. However, there's no need to pay more than is necessary. In this episode find out how to reduce your tax bill.

Most of us switch off at the mention of the word tax. It can be confusing – not to mention boring  - but sticking your head in the sand could cost you.

The average person pays £186 more than they should so watch on to find out if you can pay less.

First off you could be entitled to tax credits.

Up to three million households are missing out on an average of £13 a week in council tax benefit, while as many as 1.7 million pensioners are typically losing £31 a week in pension credit.

Use the benefit checker to find out how much you could get.

Make sure you're paying the correct level of council tax. Talk to neighbours or check online with the valuation office agency, simply by typing in your postcode.

If you've recently moved or had a change in circumstances like a new job you may need to check your tax code.

This will be on your payslips and your local tax office can help you work out if it's correct.

Earn more with your savings with an ISA. This means you do not pay any tax on interest or growth

Pensions are a great way to cash in on tax breaks.

Every £100 basic rate taxpayers invest is topped up to £120 or £140 if you pay the higher rate.

And don't forget salary sacrifice tools like childcare vouchers
 
Finally make sure you still have something to leave your loved ones. Inheritance tax is charged at 40% on anything in your estate above the nil–rate band.

The main way to reduce your estate is to give it away but there are set ways of doing this and it's worth speaking to a professional advisor.

No–one likes paying tax but as these tips show, you can at least make sure you're not paying  more than you need.