MoneySaving Poll: What do you pay cash in hand for?

MSE_Amy MSE Staff Posts: 52
Tenth Anniversary Combo Breaker
MSE Staff
Poll started 24 February 2015

What do you pay cash in hand for?

Ed Balls recently caused controversy by saying he’d expect his gardener to give him a receipt for trimming his hedge. With the onus being on the trader to declare the income for tax and VAT purposes, which of these would you typically pay cash in hand for?

FOR SERVICES YOU REGULARLY USE/USED please say if you pay cash in hand or in a traceable way, eg, cash with receipt/invoice or via cheque, card or bank transfer.

Did you vote? Are you surprised at the results so far? Have your say below. To see the results from last time, click here.

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Thanks! :)



  • stevemcol
    stevemcol Forumite Posts: 1,666 Forumite
    I only want a receipt if I need some comeback in case goods / services aren't up to standard. I object to tax dodging but I'm not policing on behalf of HMRC.
    Apparently I'm 10 years old on MSE. Happy birthday to me...etc
  • Moneyer
    Moneyer Forumite Posts: 114
    Part of the Furniture 10 Posts Combo Breaker
    One reason to get a receipt is simply to avoid any possible dispute over whether you paid or not. If you pay cash in hand and don't get a receipt, what's to stop a dishonest or just forgetful/disorganised tradesman later denying you paid and trying to make you pay again?
  • nicktrace
    nicktrace Forumite Posts: 1 Newbie
    Receipts for any work that means waste leaving your home or business helps stop the environmental crime of fly-tipping. A receipt with the name, address, phone and - important - registration number of the vehicle, means the builder, gardener, man-and-van or whatever knows you have their details in case someone finds your rubbish in a ditch, so it is less likely to get dumped, or that the dumper can be caught and convicted. It also means you have a defence when taken to court for failing in your legally required "duty of care" over your waste. Fly-tipping is a major crime and big business, ripping off customers twice: once when you get charged for waste disposal that does not happen, and again when your council tax bill arrives with the cost of clearing up your and thousands of other people's waste from roadsides. PS: Everyone taking waste away from you needs a waste carrier licence - easy to check if they have one by calling the Environment Agency or checking the EA website for the waste carrier licence register.
  • pollypenny
    pollypenny Forumite Posts: 29,371
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Name Dropper Photogenic
    For small payments it's easier to pay cash, eg a tenner to the window cleaner, £20 for the lawn mowed.

    Anything more, I'm likely to have to make a special journey to get cash, so pay by cheque.

    I've posted before that most of our regular tradesmen, plumber and tree surgeon, prefer cheques as it helps them budget.
    Member #14 of SKI-ers club

    Words, words, they're all we have to go by!.

    (Pity they are mangled by this autocorrect!)
  • barrenelly
    barrenelly Forumite Posts: 17
    Tenth Anniversary 10 Posts Combo Breaker
    Having played in bands most of my adult life, we normally expect to be paid cash in hand on the night. A cheque job is a pain really, as it means either that one of us has to bring cash to pay the others then put the cheque through his/her bank account, or wait until the cheque clears before we get our dosh. Music is a pretty poorly paid pursuit these days, so it's a long time since I earned enough to pay tax, but I have always declared all my earnings – and claimed all my expenses! Nowadays it's just a hobby for me but I still get paid on gigs and I still put it all down. Why wouldn't I? I have known musicians who've got caught, well, I can feel smug and sleep easy in my bed, and I can afford to make enemies and not worry about getting dobbed in. The pubs and clubs who book us will put down what they pay us as a business expense, so it's easy enough for HMRC to trace bands' bookings. Then, of course, tax people go on nights out the same as everyone else – and playing on stage is pretty public, after all!

    So, getting paid cash in hand doesn't necessarily mean someone is on the fiddle. Well, not THAT sort of fiddle, anyhow.
  • Gordon_the_Moron
    Gordon_the_Moron Forumite Posts: 1,472
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Combo Breaker
    I ask for a receipt when paying cash, however I pay by card wherever possible.

    As a Conservative voter hopefully I won't be saying this too often! Ed Balls is right, we should all do it, if it cuts tax evasion then it saves everyone (except criminals that evade tax) money.
    If you don't like what I say slap me around with a large trout and PM me to tell me why.

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  • I pay for quite a bit in cash really and it is down to the individual/business you are paying to declare it and not myself, Before anyone claims I am evading anything it is a case of receiving several payments in cash that all get declared on my annual tax returns.
  • goggle
    goggle Forumite Posts: 442 Forumite
    I have a chap who mows my lawns & does a bit of general gardening here & there. I pay him by BACS - win-win. He gets paid the day he does the job, I have evidence that I paid him!

  • brightonman123
    brightonman123 Forumite Posts: 8,532 Forumite
    edited 2 March 2015 at 9:22AM
    I guess it would depend how much / often the service is used..

    As many MP's have had their expenses fingers burnt, are they just trying to deflect attention?

    Forgot to add- I pay cash (no receipts! gosh!) for haircuts, odd cans of drink, chocolate, and fish&chips.. money for the latter is all rung up on their till,so I guess that's legit..
    Long time away from MSE, been dealing real life stuff..
    Sometimes seen lurking on the compers forum :-)
    FOREVER21 Forumite Posts: 1,729
    Energy Saving Champion I've been Money Tipped!
    Surprised mens barbers do not feature on the list from my first visit to present time I never ever had a receipt when getting a haircut.

    Wonder how they provide figures to HMRC for their tax purposes?
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