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DIY claim – ten year rule

23rd Dec 2021
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Readers will be familiar with the DIY scheme, that applies to the construction of a new dwelling or a conversion from a non-residential building, such as a barn conversion.

A DIY claim can also be made in relation to the renovation of an empty dwelling. One key condition is that the property has to have been empty for 10 years. And those 10 years run up to the date the works of renovation begin.

Claimants will need to do some research to determine when the property was last lived in. The local Council is the place to start, and also Estate Agents and perhaps neighbours. It is sufficient to provide evidence on the ‘balance of probabilities’ test. (HMRC sometimes asked the claimant to ‘prove’ it, which is too strict a test.)

The rule is described in the Stuart Hackett decision as ‘anomalous;’ and the conditions ‘have some oddities,’ but that is the legislation.

The decision is helpful, as it explains the crossover between s35 and Note 7A to Sch 8, Group 5:

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