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Structures and Buildings Allowance qualifying expenditure

The Structures and Buildings Allowances (SBA) facilitates tax relief for qualifying capital expenditure on new non-residential structures and buildings. The relief applies to the qualifying costs of building and renovating commercial structures. 

The relief was introduced in October 2018 at an annual capital allowance rate of 2% on a straight-line basis. From 1 April 2020, the annual rate was increased to 3% and the corresponding period reduced to 33 and one third years. 

HMRC’s internal manuals consider the meaning of qualifying capital expenditure for this tax relief. The manuals state that:

The amount of qualifying capital expenditure will depend upon whether the person who first uses the building constructed it themselves, or they acquired it unused from a developer. That amount is determined either directly from expenditure incurred on the construction of a building, or by comparing those costs with the sum paid for the relevant interest in the building.

From the total ‘qualifying expenditure’, any amounts that qualify for other capital allowances or are specifically disallowed must be removed. The qualifying expenditure does not change, even when the ownership of the building changes, there are exceptions relating to VAT liabilities and rebates.

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