The key financial dates you need to know for 2023
Looking ahead to 2023, there are numerous financial events and key dates you need to know about.
Helen Morrissey, senior pensions and retirement analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown, says: “2022 has been a bruising year for our finances with spiralling inflation putting pressure on our budgets. It’s expected to ease off as we go through 2023 but it’s going to stay tough especially given that government support in the form of cost-of-living payments will stop for most people this year.
“Added to this the amount of tax we pay continues to rise as the complex web of tax freezes and increases continues to pull more people into paying more tax – we need to keep watching the pennies closely throughout 2023.”
Here’s what’s happening in key months in 2023.
The first month of 2023 will see several changes to our finances. Firstly, a £2 cap on single bus fares will come into effect across England on 1 January and remain in place until the end of March.
The 31 January is the last day non-barcoded stamps will be valid for postage. Any non-barcoded stamps can be returned to Royal Mail who will swap them for updated versions.
The last day in January is also the tax return deadline for 2021/22 if you file online (paper returns had to be completed by 31 October 2022).
Regulated rail fares will rise by up to 5.9% from 5 March. Although this figure is below the rate of inflation, increased fares will still be a blow to train passengers.
31 March is the final deadline to complete purchases if you’re buying a home using Help To Buy. Homebuyers are expected to have the keys to their home by 6pm. Homebuilders must tell homebuyers in advance if they cannot meet these dates.
The same date will see universal energy support payments end. Since October, households have received £66 or £67 discount on their energy bill each month, totalling £400 of government support.
1 April will see the new Energy Price Guarantee of £3,000 a year come into effect. It’s worth bearing in mind that this isn’t a fixed cap on the most you can pay: it’s a cap on prices for the average user. If you burn through more energy, or live in a large or inefficient house, you could see prices rise even further.
The same date is also likely to see council tax bills rise. Budget small print allows councils to raise council tax by 3% – plus another 2% for social care – without holding a referendum. Water bills are also likely to rise from the same date.
On the plus side, 1 April will see an increase to the National Living wage and minimum wage rise take effect. Chancellor Jeremy Hunt announced in November that the National Living Wage for individuals aged 23 and over would increase by 9.7% from £9.50 to £10.42 an hour.
6 April is the start of the 2023/24 tax year and will see changes to dividend and capital gains tax. People receiving over £1,000 per year in dividend income will pay tax of 8.75%, 33.75% and 39.35% for basic, higher and additional rate taxpayers, respectively. In addition, the £12,300 capital gains tax threshold is being slashed to £6,000.
The new tax year will also see the additional rate income tax threshold slashed from £150,000 to £125,140, as announced by Chancellor Jeremy Hunt in his Autumn Statement in November.
The 2023/24 tax year will also see people receiving the state pension and other benefits get a much needed 10.1% boost to what they receive.
The 31 July will see the FCA’s ‘Consumer Duty’ rules come into effect, impacting how firms serve their customers.
Self-employed workers will need to make a note of the payment on account deadline of 31 July – there are advanced payments towards your tax bill.
Pension savers with large pension providers should be able to use the Pensions Dashboard by the end of August. They will be followed by money purchase schemes used for auto-enrolment by the end of September and then non-money purchase schemes.
If you file a paper tax return, you need to do this for the 2022/23 tax year by the end of October. Those who file online have until 31 January 2024.