Wright Vigar is delighted to congratulate our client R W Stokes & Sons on being given the green light to get started on a £1.5 million project.
The long-established Lincoln tea and coffee specialist – famed for its High Bridge Café and Stokes’ Collection Café – has been granted planning permission to forge ahead with plans to breathe new life into the city’s Lawn complex.
Managing Director Nick Peel’s vision includes the purchase of the Grade Two-listed property and its transformation into an exciting new visitor attraction.
It will feature an in-house roaster, packaging, storage and office facilities, a viewing area and a café restaurant. Future visitors will also be able to learn about the history of the building, which was a mental asylum in the 1800s.
Nick, who is keen to embark on the revamp as soon as possible, said his investment will create 16 (full-time equivalent) jobs and lead to 100 people working on the site.
Wright Vigar Director Pete Harrison: “We are delighted that Nick has been given the go-ahead for what promises to be a really exciting transformation of a landmark building in Lincoln.
“This project spells great news for jobs, supplier businesses and the city’s fast-growing visitor economy.”
Whether you are a property development business, or building a home to live in, it is important you understand what rates of VAT apply on construction of a new dwelling and how VAT can be recovered.
The first thing to clarify is that the property being constructed qualifies as a new dwelling. New means it does not incorporate any part of an existing building, other than the foundations or a basement. If planning consent includes a condition that a facade must be retained this still qualifies as new. Demolition of the existing building must occur before construction of the new building.
VAT on Construction
Zero rating is available in the course of construction, by main contractors and also subcontractors, of new buildings designed as dwellings and applies to the supply, of:
Services, other than those of an architect, consultant or a person acting in a supervisory capacity; and
Materials which are “ordinarily incorporated” in a building supplied by a person supplying zero-rated services in connection with those services. There are 2 useful lists contained in HM Revenue & Customs VAT Notice 708: Buildings and Construction; which give examples of those materials which “are” (paragraph 13.8) and those materials which “are not” (paragraph 13.9) ordinarily incorporated.
Site preparatory works required before construction commences can be zero-rated if supplied in the course of construction, i.e. if you clear the site and then commence the new build.
Materials purchased directly from a builder’s merchant will always be subject to VAT at the standard rate.
Work carried on after completion cannot be zero rated therefore the standard rate of VAT applies. Although snagging work can be zero rated if it is provided by the supplier involved in the initial building work and it forms part of the contract.
Recovery of VAT
Claiming back VAT paid depends on what you intend to do with the new dwelling.
The first sale of the freehold or grant of a major lease (terms exceeding 21 years) is a zero rated supply for VAT. As a property developer this means you are eligible to register for VAT and reclaim on your quarterly VAT returns.
If you plan to rent out the property this is an exempt supply, which means you are unable to recover any VAT you have paid out on this project.
Finally, if you are building a new family home to move into you could be eligible to make a “DIY Claim”. Upon completion of the property you have 3 months to submit the form to HMRC. Once they have reviewed and approved it you will receive a repayment.
If a purchase invoice incorrectly includes VAT at the standard rate your only recourse is to dispute this with the supplier and request an amended invoice. HMRC will not repay this amount even if you include it on your VAT return or ‘DIY claim’
VAT can prove a minefield for any business, whatever sector you operate within. At Wright Vigar we have a team of technically qualified experts who are able to advise you on the best solution for you and your business.
Staff at a county social enterprise – which is playing a key role in helping disabled, elderly and vulnerable people to live in their own homes for as long as possible – are about to celebrate a key milestone.
This month, Lincolnshire Home Independence Agency (formerly Lincolnshire Home Improvement Agency) is 10 years old, and it will be celebrating a 120 per cent increase in both turnover and staff since its inception, thanks to making a big difference to more people’s lives than ever before.
As a valued client of Wright Vigar, we would like to congratulate LHIA, as its growth is clearly reflected in the charity’s figures and the fact that it has expanded to employ 26 people over the past two years.
Lincolnshire’s ageing population, their physical, mental and financial needs, and the monetary constraints facing the county are driving the demand for LHIA’s services.
These include its property adaptations and improvements, Handyperson help and the supply of products designed to make daily living easier. LHIA’s door is open to anyone needing support to live independently in their own home.
Clients may have been told about LHIA by the local authority and those helped may be people who qualify for grant aid or, alternatively, self-funders.
However, in 2013 LHIA became a founder member of the Lincs Independent Living Partnership (LILP). Soon afterwards, it led a successful bid on behalf of LILP to deliver the prestigious Wellbeing Service contract.
LHIA Director Mick King said this is being delivered for Lincolnshire County Council by LHIA, in partnership with Age UK Lincoln, Boston Mayflower and LACE Housing.
“The Wellbeing Service delivered by LILP is available in full in five of Lincolnshire’s seven districts; Boston Borough, the City of Lincoln, South Holland, South Kesteven and West Lindsey; and the Home Safe hospital-supported discharge, which is part of it, is also available in East Lindsey and North Kesteven.
People can tap into the Wellbeing Service by calling the county’s Customer Service Centre on 01522 782140. An adviser will check their eligibility and make referrals. People will then be visited by a trusted assessor within seven days.”
A personal support plan is drawn up and LHIA and its partners may go on to supply and install bath seats, chair risers and key safes, adapt someone’s home and make it safer by fitting grab rails or provide lifeline services.
“We were delighted when we won this contract, because we bid against national providers. It is great that it was not only awarded to a local consortium, but fantastic to report that it has been extended for a third year,” said Mr King.
“This has made a huge difference to our operations and we have seen our team grow from 12 to 26 staff. It has also had a superb knock-on effect for local businesses. In 2014/15 alone our supply chain included thirty local contractors.
“The same year, we spent over £700,000 on salaries and local goods and services and our activities led to nearly £1.6 million being circulated in the local economy.”
In its first year, to April 2015, more than 4,400 people were supported by the Wellbeing Service, including over 1,600 people who had never before had support.
It reduced the number of people needing acute health and wellbeing support and reports revealed 60 instances where ambulance call outs and A&E attendance had been avoided – leading to an overall saving of £20,940 on hospital admissions.
That number of new Wellbeing Service clients has risen to over 3,000 in the second year, an increase of nearly 90 per cent. This is in addition to LHIA’s support for more than 140 clients by delivering major adaptations, ranging from stairlifts to full house extensions.
“As part of our everyday services and also the Wellbeing Service, we continue to handle lots of benefits reviews for people. These involve making applications to the Department for Work & Pensions in respect of disability living, attendance allowance, personal independence payments and other benefits.”
By the end of March (2016), with our partners we secured over £1 million in extra benefits for people, said Mr King.
LHIA also has agreements with Boston Borough and South Kesteven District Councils to deliver Handyperson Services and with the City of Lincoln Council, Boston Borough and South Kesteven Councils to deliver its Disabled Facilities Grant adaptations. This service is also about to go live in North Lincolnshire.
LHIA staff will celebrate the organisation – and team members’ achievements – at its inaugural staff awards ceremony at The Bentley Hotel in South Hykeham on April 14.
This glittering event will be hosted by the Lord Bishop of Lincoln and LHIA President, the Right Reverend Christopher Lowson.
Wright Vigar Ltd Director Chris Shelbourne said: “At Wright Vigar we work closely with the team at LHIA to ensure, as a Social Enterprise, it is receiving personally tailored and timely advice on key financial areas of the business.
“We are delighted to see the services provided by LHIA and its partners are having such a positive impact on the community and we are very happy to support this event, which will recognise and celebrate the achievements of all team members within LHIA.”