Major Announcements by Chancellor Rishi Sunak

  08 JULY, 2020
housing green homes grant budget

Rishi Sunak has today set out plans to mitigate the impacts that coronavirus has had on the construction sector and economy at large. Here are some of the key highlights from today’s announcement.

The Construction Talent Retention Scheme

In a move to protect against widespread redundancies across the sector, the Government in conjunction with the Construction Leadership Council, announced a new Construction Talent Retention Scheme.

Under the scheme, employers will be able to redeploy staff at risk of redundancy through an online portal and temporarily loan employees between different businesses.

This scheme will also make it easier for redundant workers from other sectors to find employment in the construction sector.

The Talent Retention Scheme will launch later in July and all services provided by the scheme are initially free until April 2021.

Further information on the scheme is available by downloading CLC’s flyer and businesses are able to register their interest in the scheme by visiting the website.


The Green Homes Grant

With the UK aiming to go carbon neutral by 2050, it was also announced that from September 2020, homeowner occupiers and landlords are able to apply for vouchers to cover costs associated with making their properties more energy efficient.

The vouchers will cover two-thirds of the cost to make their homes more energy efficient, up to a limit of £5,000 per home. Up to £10,000 will be provided for low income households to cover the entire cost of the upgrade.

“Taken together we expect these measures to make over 650,000 homes more energy efficient, save households up to £300 a year on their bills."

"And, most importantly right now, support around 140,000 green jobs.” Said the chancellor.

In order to pay for the vouchers, the Government has set aside £2bn, with a further £1bn allocated to making public buildings and social housing more energy efficient.

reminder that Novus are able to assist with any energy efficient works required to properties.

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Temporary cut to stamp duty

From tomorrow, the Government will raise the stamp duty threshold to £500,000 in a move that will see “nearly nine out of 10 people buying their main home this year will pay no stamp duty at all.”

The chancellor hopes that this will give people the confidence “to buy, sell, renovate, move and improve” properties that will in-turn “drive growth, that will create jobs.”

This temporary cut is in place for England and Northern Ireland and will run until at least 31 March 2021.


VAT has been slashed for hospitality sector

To get the hospitality sector moving again, VAT will be slashed by the chancellor.

Beginning 1 week from today (8th July) until 12th January, VAT has been cut from 20% to 5% on food from restaurants, cafes and pubs, accommodation in hotels, B&Bs, campsites and caravan sites, and attractions such as cinemas, theme parks and zoos.

Mr. Sunak also introduced a surprise pioneering scheme to provide everyone in the UK "Eat Out to Help Out" discount during August.

"Meals eaten at any participating business, Monday to Wednesday, will be 50% off, up to a maximum discount of £10 per head for everyone, including children," he said.


Further job retention schemes

Further measures to ensure job retention were also given the green light today.

“If you stand by your workers, we will stand by you.” That was the clear message to struggling businesses faced with making their staff redundant due to the coronavirus pandemic.

"If you're an employer and you bring back someone who was furloughed - and continuously employ them through to January - we'll pay you a £1,000 bonus per employee.”

So for businesses to get the bonus, the employee must be paid at least £520 on average, in each month from November to the end of January - the equivalent of the lower earnings limit in national insurance."

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NEW REPORT: NOVUS ARE AMONGST THE FASTEST PAYERS

Every year, the Government publish figures on the promptness of businesses in paying their suppliers. Having submitted numbers for 2019/2020, Novus ranks amongst the quickest to pay supplier invoices in the industry. Average time taken to pay invoices This is the average elapsed time taken for a business in receipt of goods or services to pay the supplier. Published on 29th July 2020, Novus achieved an average payment time of 33 days against all of its invoices; a number that places the building contractor inside the top 3 organisations of all its major competitors (total 11 compared). In addition, this eclipses the “43 day average” for contractors to pay their suppliers Construction News reported in 2019. The article also indicated the average proportion of invoices not paid to the terms originally set out is 28 per cent, compared to 9% this year for Novus. The importance of quick payments As a company, Novus strives to build strong and trustworthy partnerships with their suppliers, maintaining an open dialogue with its supply chain, and of the belief that quick payments are reflective of mutual respect. The importance of quick payments goes almost without saying in the current climate. The backdrop of Covid-19 Late payment of invoices is a problem for most suppliers of goods and services in any industry, and in a challenging economy, the issue is only heightened. Subsequently, it will probably come as no surprise that late payments and bad debts are the main causes of insolvency in construction companies, contributing almost a quarter of all insolvencies. Publicly available information For further information about average payment times, visit the Government website, specifically the “Check when large businesses pay their suppliers” page. From here you can check the average time it takes for a large business to pay its suppliers and the proportion of payments that it doesn’t pay on time. Specific information about Novus can be found here.

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