VAT on alterations to listed buildings

The former zero rating of VAT on approved alterations to listed buildings was changed to standard rating, with VAT charged at 20%, on supplies made with effect from 1 October 2012.

This means that alterations to churches which are listed buildings will be zero rated where the work was done and invoiced by 30 September 2012, but work done and invoiced after that date will attract a VAT charge of 20%, effectively increasing the cost of the work to the church by a fifth.

The government responded to representations made by the Church of England on this issue by extending the scope of the Listed Places of Worship Grant Scheme so that it covers alterations as well as repairs – details of the Scheme can be found at Listed Places of Worship Grant Scheme. PCC’s should seek advice from their architects on the operation of the Scheme in relation to proposed works.