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November 25, 2008

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Home Base Holidays

Thanks for drawing attenion to an important point. Bartering goods or services is always a grey area as far as taxes go and it's possible that exchanging accommodation in the way suggested by Susan could be more problematic than a normal home exchange arrangement, especially if it became a popular idea (although some how I doubt it would appeal to more than a minority of members).

It's probably worth looking at LETS (Local Exchange Trading Systems) that have operated in various ways all over the world for many years as the tax issue will be one that many LETS groups have encountered.

Hobiej

I think that you ought to take some care here. There is a risk that this type of transaction could be challenged by the tax authorities. Just imagine the comparison if for example your correspondent was asking £100 per week for her accomodation. You would probably expect her to pay tax on that rent. Ok, now if she asks for £100 worth of loo rolls that doesn't just become a tax free transaction. Your are right that it is possible to have a barter arrangement (which is after all what a house swap is) but if it appears to be a subsitute for commercial rent as opposed to an informal non-commercial transaction I think you could be in a problem area.

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