By Emily Rivers
Last updated 29th February 2024

If you’re self-employed, have a second income or are a high earner, you’ll need to complete a self assessment tax return. The deadline is 31st January every year for the previous financial year, and if you don’t file in time you can be left with hefty fines.

While you can do a tax return yourself, in many cases, you’ll save money if you hire an accountant to file yours for you. But how much will it cost? We’ll explain everything in this guide.

How much does a self assessment accountant cost?

An accountant who deals with self assessments will usually charge an average of £200, but you could pay £300 or more if your finances are complicated.

While that might seem like a lot of money for something that you can complete yourself, accountants who specialise in tax returns can help you be more tax efficient. They can help you understand all the different things that you can claim as allowable expenses. If you’ve missed out a lot of expenses on your return, it’s not uncommon to save at least what you’ve paid your accountant in tax.

Self assessment accountant cost

Who needs to do a self assessment tax return?

The government says that you must do a self assessment tax return if, in the last tax year (6th April to 5th April), you:

  • were self-employed as a ‘sole trader’ and earned more than £1,000 before taking off anything you can claim tax relief on

  • were a partner in a business partnership

  • had a total taxable income of more than £100,000

  • had to pay the High Income Child Benefit Charge (usually if you receive Child Benefit and you or your partner have an individual income of over £50,000)

You may also need to fill in a tax return if you have untaxed income from things like tips and commission, a property you rent out or you receive income from savings and investments.

If you’re unsure, it’s best to get in touch with an accountant who will be able to tell you if you should complete a tax return.

How long does it take an accountant to do a tax return?

How long it takes an accountant to do your tax return will depend on how complicated your accounts are and whether you’ve kept them in good order – for example you’ve kept detailed bookkeeping records and organised your receipts. If your finances are relatively straightforward, an accountant should be able to calculate and file your tax return in 2 working days.

If your accountant needs to ask you for more information or query your receipts, it will take longer for them to do your tax return. Plus, if you have more complex finances, for example you have lots of income streams, it will take them longer to complete. That’s generally why accountants charge more to file your tax return the more complicated your finances are.

Will HMRC tell me if I need to do a tax return?

If you’ve registered for self assessment on the government website and you’ve opted in to HMRC’s email reminder service, then they should tell you that you need to do a tax return. However, you shouldn’t rely on this to remind you, as their emails could end up in your spam folder or may not even reach your inbox at all.

HMRC can also only tell you to do a tax return if you’ve told them that you’re a sole trader or need to file a return for another reason. They won’t be able to tell that you have untaxed income that you need to declare. But don’t use this as a way to get out of paying tax – there are many other ways that HMRC can find out that you owe income tax.

Is it easy to do your own tax return?

If you’ve got simple finances, it can be easy to do your own tax return if you’re confident with numbers. You can work out how much you have earned in the last financial year and what you’ve spent on your business, then take your expenditure away from your earnings to calculate your taxable income.

If you’re a sole trader or have a business partnership where no limited companies are partners, you can use HMRC’s simplified expenses. This allows you to calculate some of your business expenses using flat rates instead of working out your actual business costs, which can save you time.

However, you should check whether using simplified expenses suits your business. You may find that you can claim more in expenses by working out the actual costs. The government has a simplified expenses checker to help you decide.

If you don’t feel confident in filing your own tax return, you have lots of different income streams or your accounts aren’t very organised, it’s better to hire an accountant. They will ensure that your tax return is completed properly and help you avoid any penalties or prevent you from paying more tax than you owe.

Should I use an accountant for Capital Gains Tax?

Capital Gains Tax (CGT) is a complex area with lots of rules, so it’s best to use an accountant if you think you need to pay it. You have to pay CGT when you sell an asset that’s increased in value, such as a buy-to-let property. You only pay CGT on the gain rather than the entire amount that you receive.

It’s important to get your CGT calculation right as you don’t want to be left with a large bill if HMRC finds you haven’t paid enough, and you don’t want to pay more than you need to. It makes sense to use an accountant to help you pay the right amount of tax.

Can I claim accountant fees on self assessment?

Yes, you can claim accountant fees on self assessment – if you are self-employed. Accountancy fees, along with legal and other professional fees, can count as allowable business expenses, so your accountant will include their fees on the relevant self assessment tax return.

If you only have employment income but need to file a tax return, you can’t claim the accountant fees. This is because it’s seen as a choice to use an accountant rather than a necessity, so isn’t eligible for tax relief.

If you are employed but also have rental income or a partnership, you can claim an accountant’s fees on your tax return as long as you only claim for the amount that was spent on managing your other affairs, rather than your employment income.

Is it worth getting an accountant for self assessment?

We think it’s worth getting an accountant for your self assessment tax return. They will take the stress away from doing your tax return yourself, and ensure it’s filed well on time to help you avoid penalties.

An accountant can often pay for themselves in the savings you make on your tax bill. They know all the things that you can claim as allowable expenses and will make sure that you only pay the tax you owe.

If you’re ready to find an accountant for your tax return, HaMuch can help. We’ll put you in touch with our partner who will find you a qualified accountant in your area.


Estimates for common accountant services

Job Estimate
Setting up a limited company £300.00
Self assessment tax return £200.00
Bookkeeping £225.00 per month

Rates for other trades

Self assessment estimated cost per month
Self assessment approximate cost in the UK per month
Location in UKSelf assessment cost
Self assessment near Aberdeen£231
Self assessment near Amber Valley£229
Self assessment near Angus£228
Self assessment near Arun£232
Self assessment near Ashfield£231
Self assessment near Aylesbury Vale£239
Self assessment near Barnsley£232
Self assessment near Basildon£242
Self assessment near Basingstoke & Deane£241
Self assessment near Bassetlaw£230
Self assessment near Bath & North East Somerset£235
Self assessment near Bedford£239
Self assessment near Belfast£223
Self assessment near Birmingham£233
Self assessment near Blackburn£232
Self assessment near Blackpool£232
Self assessment near Bolton£232
Self assessment near Bournemouth£233
Self assessment near Bracknell Forest£245
Self assessment near Bradford£232
Self assessment near Braintree£238
Self assessment near Breckland£236
Self assessment near Bridgend£230
Self assessment near Brighton£238
Self assessment near Bristol£235
Self assessment near Broadland£234
Self assessment near Broxtowe£231
Self assessment near Bury£232
Self assessment near Caerphilly£230
Self assessment near Calderdale£231
Self assessment near Cambridge£238
Self assessment near Canterbury£232
Self assessment near Cardiff£230
Self assessment near Carmarthenshire£229
Self assessment near Charnwood£231
Self assessment near Chelmsford£241
Self assessment near Cheltenham£232
Self assessment near Cherwell£237
Self assessment near Chester£231
Self assessment near Colchester£236
Self assessment near Conway£249
Self assessment near Coventry£233
Self assessment near Crewe & Nantwich£229
Self assessment near Dacorum£245
Self assessment near Derby£229
Self assessment near Doncaster£230
Self assessment near Dover£230
Self assessment near Dudley£233
Self assessment near Dumfries & Galloway£230
Self assessment near Dundee£231
Self assessment near East Ayrshire£230
Self assessment near East Devon£231
Self assessment near East Dunbartonshire£235
Self assessment near East Hampshire£236
Self assessment near East Hertfordshire£242
Self assessment near East Lindsey£226
Self assessment near East Riding£230
Self assessment near Eastleigh£237
Self assessment near Edinburgh£234
Self assessment near Elmbridge£248
Self assessment near Epping Forest£247
Self assessment near Erewash£231
Self assessment near Exeter£229
Self assessment near Falkirk£235
Self assessment near Fife£232
Self assessment near Flintshire£230
Self assessment near Gateshead£233
Self assessment near Gedling£231
Self assessment near Glasgow£234
Self assessment near Gloucester£231
Self assessment near Guildford£244
Self assessment near Gwynedd£245
Self assessment near Halton£232
Self assessment near Harrogate£231
Self assessment near Havant & Waterloo£235
Self assessment near Highland
Self assessment near Horsham£241
Self assessment near Huntingdonshire£237
Self assessment near Ipswich£233
Self assessment near Isle of Wight£238
Self assessment near Kings Lynn & West Norfolk£231
Self assessment near Kingston-upon-Hull£230
Self assessment near Kirklees£231
Self assessment near Knowsley£232
Self assessment near Lancaster£229
Self assessment near Leeds£233
Self assessment near Leicester£236
Self assessment near Lisburn£224
Self assessment near Liverpool£232
Self assessment near London£248
Self assessment near Luton£244
Self assessment near Macclesfield£232
Self assessment near Maidstone£242
Self assessment near Manchester£232
Self assessment near Mid Bedfordshire£241
Self assessment near Mid Sussex£240
Self assessment near Middlesbrough£232
Self assessment near Milton Keynes£238
Self assessment near Neath Port Talbot£230
Self assessment near New Forest£236
Self assessment near Newbury£241
Self assessment near Newcastle-under-Lyme£229
Self assessment near Newcastle-upon-Tyne£233
Self assessment near Newport£230
Self assessment near North Ayrshire£232
Self assessment near North East Lincolnshire£227
Self assessment near North Hertfordshire£242
Self assessment near North Lanarkshire£235
Self assessment near North Lincolnshire£230
Self assessment near North Somerset£234
Self assessment near North Tyneside£233
Self assessment near North Wiltshire£239
Self assessment near Northampton£237
Self assessment near Norwich£236
Self assessment near Nottingham£231
Self assessment near Nuneaton & Bedworth£235
Self assessment near Oldham£232
Self assessment near Oxford£239
Self assessment near Pembrokeshire£225
Self assessment near Perth & Kinross£233
Self assessment near Peterborough£232
Self assessment near Plymouth£231
Self assessment near Poole£233
Self assessment near Portsmouth£237
Self assessment near Powys£233
Self assessment near Preston£232
Self assessment near Reading£243
Self assessment near Redcar & Cleveland£233
Self assessment near Reigate & Banstead£247
Self assessment near Renfrewshire£235
Self assessment near Rhondda, Cynon, Taff£231
Self assessment near Rochdale£232
Self assessment near Rochester-upon-Medway
Self assessment near Rotherham£229
Self assessment near Salford£232
Self assessment near Salisbury£231
Self assessment near Sandwell£233
Self assessment near Scarborough£229
Self assessment near Scottish Borders
Self assessment near Sefton£232
Self assessment near Sevenoaks£244
Self assessment near Sheffield£229
Self assessment near Slough£246
Self assessment near Solihull£233
Self assessment near South Ayrshire£232
Self assessment near South Bedfordshire£239
Self assessment near South Cambridgeshire£239
Self assessment near South Gloucestershire£235
Self assessment near South Kesteven£235
Self assessment near South Lanarkshire£233
Self assessment near South Oxfordshire£241
Self assessment near South Somerset£234
Self assessment near South Tyneside£232
Self assessment near Southampton£237
Self assessment near Southend-on-Sea£240
Self assessment near St Albans£245
Self assessment near St Helens£232
Self assessment near Stafford£231
Self assessment near Stockport£232
Self assessment near Stockton-on-Tees£232
Self assessment near Stoke-on-Trent£229
Self assessment near Stratford-on-Avon£234
Self assessment near Stroud£231
Self assessment near Suffolk Coastal£234
Self assessment near Sunderland£232
Self assessment near Swale£237
Self assessment near Swansea£230
Self assessment near Tameside£232
Self assessment near Teignbridge£228
Self assessment near Tendring£234
Self assessment near Test Valley£233
Self assessment near Thamesdown£238
Self assessment near Thanet£230
Self assessment near The Wrekin£229
Self assessment near Thurrock£244
Self assessment near Torbay£228
Self assessment near Trafford£232
Self assessment near Vale of Glamorgan£231
Self assessment near Vale of White Horse£237
Self assessment near Vale Royal£230
Self assessment near Wakefield£232
Self assessment near Walsall£233
Self assessment near Warrington£232
Self assessment near Warwick£234
Self assessment near Waveney£233
Self assessment near Waverley£242
Self assessment near Wealden£245
Self assessment near West Lancashire£232
Self assessment near West Lothian£233
Self assessment near West Wiltshire£239
Self assessment near Wigan£231
Self assessment near Windsor & Maidenhead£245
Self assessment near Wirral£233
Self assessment near Wokingham£244
Self assessment near Wolverhampton£234
Self assessment near Wrexham Maelor£229
Self assessment near Wychavon£233
Self assessment near Wycombe£243
Self assessment near York£231