The coronavirus pandemic has fundamentally changed the way we live. It’s an anxious and tough time, and while the primary concern is health, the impact it’s had on businesses and the economy has caused a great concern for many.

Below we’ve summarised the business and personal savings that you can take advantage of during this time before it’s too late.

Business

Rates grant

You may not think you comply with the retail rates grant, but if you supply to the direct public, some local authorities are classing your business as retail. It is worth seeing if you can access this grant for a £25k boost.

There are also additional grants for:

  • Businesses in shared spaces
  • Regular market traders
  • Small charity properties
  • Bed and breakfasts that pay council tax rather than business rate

These businesses will have missed out because they aren’t recognised as directly paying business rates. Contact your businesses local council to apply for these grants.

To read more about whether you are eligible and what you need to do, read our dedicated article on rates grants here.

Grants for other struggling businesses

Local authorities have also been given other pockets of money to award to the worst affected businesses in their area. If you believe this applies to your business, you would need to put together a detailed email to them outline the direct impacts on your business. They may also ask for proof of current financials to show little to no income.

Currency exchange review

Many businesses are exposed to foreign exchange fluctuations, sometimes for the better but often for the worse. Can your business afford this uncertainty in already uncertain times?

To save money on your foreign exchange transactions why not have a free review with Moneycorp, one of our trusted business partners.

Read more about this here.

Paying your employees

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme has been the subject of most of our questions since 20th March when it was announced. Recently there have been changes to this scheme, which we have detailed in our article here. But the important part to note is that if you haven’t yet taken advantage of this government help to pay your employees, it is too late. If you haven’t furloughed members of your team by 10th June, they can no longer be furloughed.

Paying sick pay

The Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme repays employers the Statutory Sick Pay paid to current or former employees. If an employee is having to continue shielding or has symptoms of Coronavirus, you have a payroll scheme that was created on or before 28 February 2020 and you have fewer than 250 employees, you can claim this back.

Find out more here.

Deferral of VAT payments

If your business is VAT registered and has a VAT payment due between 20 March 2020 (Feb 2020 quarter end) and 30 June 2020 (April 2020 quarter end) you will have heard us advising on the option to defer the payment until a later date in order to help manage your cash flow. It has been confirmed that HMRC will not charge interest or penalties on any amount deferred. If you decide to defer your VAT payment, you must catch up your debt on or before 31 March 2021.

Time to pay arrangements are also available to all businesses and individuals who are in temporary financial distress as a result of coronavirus.

If you’re struggling to pay your tax bill on time, or you’re experiencing financial difficulties you can contact HMRC’s Time to Pay service.

Personal

Mortgage holidays

  • Mortgage holders already on a payment holiday should be able to extend it for a further three months
  • Mortgage holders who haven’t yet applied for a payment holiday can do so until 31 October 2020
  • Mortgage holders will be able to take partial payment holidays
  • At the moment, mortgage holidays do not count against your credit rating. However, some banks and building societies have been campaigning for the extension to the scheme to blemish your credit record. We hope this doesn’t come into play as it seems unfair to apply this retrospectively. Our advice is to check with your bank what their policy is with the impact to credit scores.
  • Lenders won’t be able to repossess properties until after 31 October.

Find out more about applying for a mortgage holiday here.

Self-employed grant – Deadline for application

The first grant opened for applications on Wednesday 13 May. It covers 3 months – March, April and May. The grants for these months are worth up to 80% of profits, capped at £2,500 per month, or £7,500 in total. You can still apply for this first grant, but the Government have stated you must do so before Monday 13 July.

The second (and final) grant will open in August covering the 3 months – June, July and August.

You are still allowed to work and receive these grants to help support any decline in profits – don’t look a gift horse in the mouth and miss the deadline.

There will be further guidance on this grant this week, so we will keep you updated.

Find out more to apply for the self-employed grant here.

Whilst the government have outlined fantastic measures for helping businesses and people personally, it’s also important you review your own personal finances and where you can save money. Read our tips on reducing your personal expenses here.

Other government support available:

Contact me today!

Emma White

FCA

Partner

01474 853856

Send me a message

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