The Green Party has pledged to cut VAT on housing repairs and renovations.
Currently, the VAT rate on repairs and renovations is 20% but, with the UK housing stock in desperate need of improvements such as insulation, a coalition led by the Federation of Master Builders (FMB) has been calling for a reduction to 5% – the lowest level allowed by European rules.
The latest independent economic research from Experian shows that a reduction in VAT on housing renovation and repair from 20% to 5% could create 42,000 extra full-time equivalent jobs in construction from 2015 to 2020 and an additional 53,000 jobs in the wider economy over the same five-year period.
“This VAT cut would be a real boost for green jobs and warm homes,” said Tom Chance, Green Party Housing Spokesperson. “It comes at a time when we desperately need to be investing in a nationwide home insulation scheme, to cut bills and end the scandal of fuel poverty.
“This Election presents Britain with a chance to vote for change. This VAT cut – just one of an array of bold policies from the Green Party – demonstrates our commitment to building a Britain of warm, comfortable homes.”
Brian Berry, chief executive of the FMB, said: “A VAT reduction on housing renovation and repair work will empower homeowners to contribute to growth, jobs and greener homes. There is no other proposal that will help the UK achieve so many of its economic, environmental and social aims with so little cost to the public purse.”
He added: “The Green Party is the latest political party to commit to a VAT reduction on housing renovation and repair and we are delighted they see the enormous value of this policy.”