A CAMPAIGN calling for VAT on building repairs and maintenance to be reduced to 5% is being spearheaded by a West Yorkshire firm.
Property firm Rok is leading the Repairing Britain campaign, which is urging people to sign its Downing Street e-petition before the April deadline.
The campaign, which is supported by leading industry organisations and employers, has already attracted several thousand signatures – and is aiming for 10,000. A paper petition is also available at Rok’s offices in Commercial Street, Morley, and Calder Park, Wakefield.
The e-petition is encouraging a targeted VAT reduction that will save jobs and retain skills in the UK construction sector and encourage householders and businesses to undertake repairs and improvements to properties.
The campaign is also designed to raise awareness about the huge number of properties that could be brought back into use to meet housing demands. During the next two years, 250,000 new homes could be created by refurbishing just 20% of the buildings now lying empty and in disrepair.
Martin Donnachie, Rok housing director, said: “The practical benefits of reducing VAT on property repairs and maintenance have gained traction with thousands of people who have already signed our petition. We do want more support and I hope people can log on and show their support for our campaign before the deadline.
“Although, officially, the UK is out of recession, the challenges for business sectors like the construction industry are just beginning. Lowering VAT on property repairs and maintenance will provide a stimulus to the industry that bring in more work and help firms retain jobs and skills that are in danger of disappearing.”