The reduction of VAT on domestic building work will benefit consumers, the industry and even the Government. Cutting VAT on domestic work will enable consumers to make informed choices based on building quality and not necessarily on who offers the cheapest deal, which will benefit both them and reputable builders; Cutting out the cowboy will reduce the unacceptably high level of complaints against poor building work Office of Fair Trading (OFT) figures report that there are around 100,000 complaints about bad building work each year. Hire Online House Buyer’s Agent  Studies in France, the Netherlands and the Isle of Man show that any reduction in VAT will be passed on to the customer.

Buyer's AgentThis means that more money will be available for home improvements. A cut in VAT would represent an investment in better homes, greater energy efficiency and improved health and safety in the industry added Ian Davis. The Federation urges the Chancellor to reduce VAT on domestic RMI to 5%. This change could act as the catalyst for the improvements that the construction industry so desperately needs.

FMB Members and other legitimate builders are confronted every day by illegal competition from rogue traders who evade tax by carrying out domestic RMI work for cash. These ‘cowboy’ traders are destroying the fabric of the construction industry by cutting corners, doing cheap and often substandard work and ignoring best practice in health and safety and training. Reputable builders who refuse to compromise on quality and safety are going out of business as a result.

In fact, you will end up saving all that extra effort, time and resources that would get wasted going. The only way forwards is to reduce the rate of VAT itself. Reducing the rate of VAT to 5% on domestic RMI work will significantly reduce the commercial advantage that the rogue trader enjoys. It will put builders on a much more level playing field and allow customers to choose on the basis of quality and service.

This experiment has already been tried in France, and resulted in a reduction in rogue trading activity and the creation of more jobs in the construction sector. It is time for British consumers and builders to enjoy the same benefits. This is an important issue which touches upon the life of every man, woman and child in the country. If VAT on domestic RMI work can be reduced to 5%, it will be a key step in the elimination of rogue builders and the misery that they cause.