This also applies to private individuals within the sharing economy who sell services, e.g. the hiring out of assets (however, see below concerning the letting of housing).
In order for VAT to be an issue, the scope of the activity must be sufficient for it to be called a “commercial activity”. The requirement for commercial activity means that the activity must have a certain duration and be of a certain scope, be likely to generate a financial profit within the foreseeable future and be run at the owner's own expense and risk.
The assessment has similarities with that for businesses within the field of tax, and the information that is provided for tax, e.g. the boundary between hobby and commercial activity, can generally be used as a basis for the assessment in relation to VAT. In some cases, it can be difficult to assess where the boundary lies. If you are unsure, you can always contact us via email. Another source of useful information is the Guidance for businesses.
In one respect, the assessment for VAT differs from that for tax:
In the case of VAT, it is a requirement that the turnover must have exceeded NOK 50,000 over a period of 12 months before the obligation to register is triggered. For more information on how this boundary is calculated, see Registration in the VAT Register.
The letting of housing (houses, apartments or individual rooms) is considered to be the letting of real property, and this constitutes a rental service which is exempt from the obligation to calculate and pay VAT.
This means that you can let housing without having to consider the obligation to pay VAT, even if you earn more than NOK 50,000 over a 12-month period.
There is an important exception from this general rule:
If the scope and nature of an activity means that it is similar to hotel activity, or if the activity involves the letting of a holiday home (cabins or holiday apartments), there is still an obligation to calculate VAT. This assessment can be difficult and we recommend that you contact the tax office to find out more.