What expenses can I claim for working from home? Martin Lewis explains all...

Get help from HMRC with your heat and electricity bill

If you're wondering what expenses can I claim for working from home, Martin Lewis has a top tip.

Related: UPDATE: How will Coronavirus affect our finances? Martin Lewis explains all

On a Coronavirus special of The Martin Lewis Money Show last night, the saving guru revealed his top tip to get help towards your energy bills at this time.

'If you're required to work at home, you've had extra expenses, heating and energy on the back of that,' he said. 'Of course, right now, lots of you are required to work at home (opens in new tab), millions, because of the coronavirus outbreak.'

What expenses can I claim for working from home?

work desk chair with shelves on wall and flower vase

(Image credit: Future PLC/Dominic Blackmore)

'Your employer is allowed to pay you £6 a month tax-free,' he explained. 'That £6 is from the new tax year Monday. It is currently £4. But I'll go with the £6 figure.'

'Now they can do that, but asking your employer for extra money at the moment is probably not the best idea for most firms,' he advised.

Instead, Martin explained that you can claim tax relief from HMRC. 'You can claim relief on the £6 allowance from HMRC with works out for a basic rate taxpayer a week, £1.20 for a week. For a high rate taxpayer £2.40 a week,' he explains.

'To do this you need to fill in your P87 form, but you want to fill this in once you go back to work,' he adds. 'So it's just one to be aware of.'

martin lewis

(Image credit: Steve Parsons/PA Archive/PA Images)

You can fill out an online P87 form (opens in new tab) through your Government Gateway account or filling out a postal form. You will need your employer's name PAYE reference and National Insurance number to fill out the form.

The key section to fill out is 'using your home as an office'. Martin provides more tips on how to fill out the form on his Money Saving Expert blog (opens in new tab).

But why can you only claim £6?

'The reason for the £6 flat rate is that's the amount that you don't need to prove. You don't need a receipt,' Martin explains.'If you're going to claim more you're going to need to prove how much it cost you. Keep all the receipts and apportion it, but that is a bit more complex.'

work desk with chair and laptop potted plant

(Image credit: Future PLC/Simon Whitmore)

On the Money Saving Expert website, Martin says: 'HMRC says it will consider claims from employees working at home due to coronavirus measures if their usual workplace is closed.'

Related: Working from home causing your energy bill to soar? Save money with these simple energy-saving tips

However, he is unsure how it will work out in practice as HMRC is under a lot of pressure. Still, he urges anyone working from home to try.

Rebecca Knight
Rebecca Knight

Rebecca Knight has been the Deputy Editor on the Ideal Home Website since 2022. She graduated with a Masters degree in magazine journalism from City, University of London in 2018, before starting her journalism career as a staff writer on women's weekly magazines. She fell into the world of homes and interiors after joining the Ideal Home website team in 2019 as a Digital Writer. In 2020 she moved into position of Homes News Editor working across Homes & Gardens, LivingEtc, Real Homes, Gardeningetc and Ideal Home covering everything from the latest viral cleaning hack to the next big interior trend.