I want to start a property development company on a small scale, one project at a time. Do I have to register with Companies House if it is a new start-up, or not until it goes over the VAT threshold for money coming in? Can I then offset all my expenses and outgoings associated with work associated with the new company’s business, which is in building new homes and renovating properties?
Arthur Weller replies:
Any company needs to be registered with Companies House, whether active or dormant. Once the company has begun, pre-trading expenditure incurred not more than seven years before the trade starts may be treated as an expense of the first trading period. See HMRC’s Business Income manual at BIM46350.