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Pre-Budget report disappoints BMF

The Builders Merchants Federation is disappointed that last week’s Pre-Budget Report did not lower the VAT rate to 5% for RMI work.
Nor were there any new measures announced by the Chancellor of the Exchequer to increase housebuilding activity nor vary the National Minimum Wage.

BMF would also like to have seen some changes to vehicle fuel duty,alterations to statutory redundancy pay and an extension of the Government’s trade credit insurance top-up scheme.

Measures that were announced include:

  • £50m on a new boiler scrappage scheme,

  • an extra £150m to help 75,000 more households under the Warm Front fuel poverty scheme,

  • £900 p.a. tax-free payment to homeowners who sell electricity back to the National Grid generated from their domestic solar panels or wind turbines

  • electric cars to be exempt from company car tax for 5 years – and a 100% first-year capital allowance for electric vans

  • roll-out of electricity smart meters will be completed by 2020

  • Stamp Duty holiday will end on 31 December – threshold will revert to £125,000

  • extending high-speed broadband to 90% of the UK – to be paid for by 50p per month levy on all telephone landlines

  • the creation of Infrastructure UK, a body to advise the Government on large national infrastructure projects over the next 50 years – i.e. high-speed railways; water, waste & electricity networks; and the next generation of broadband.

  • standard VAT rate reverts to 17.5% from 1 January 2010 (no other VAT changes);

  • National Insurance will increase by extra 0.5% from 2011 – on top of already planned 0.5% increase – i.e. a whole 1% rise in April 2011 – but threshold will be raised so no-one earning less than £20,00 will pay it

  • planned 1p increase in Corporation Tax for small businesses will be deferred

  • HMRC ‘Time To Pay’ scheme (that allows firms to spread their tax payments) will be extended for as long as needed

  • Basic State Pension will go up by 2.5% from April 2010

  • employer pension contribution to be included in definition of tax income relating to pensions’ tax relief for anyone earning over £130,000

  • Inheritance Tax to be frozen at £325,000 for the next year

  • no changes to Income Tax rates and thresholds stay the same

  • in April 2012, point at which people start paying 40% Income Tax to be frozen for a year (affects anyone earning more than £43,000);

  • exemption of empty, smaller commercial property from business rates to be extended.
  • About Fiona Russell-Horne

    Group Managing Editor across the BMJ portfolio.

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