Double Glazing And VAT

Apart from linking you with any schemes that can potentially offer free cash against the cost of double glazing, will always try to answer the most common questions around the overall cost of windows and doors in the UK.

One of the main questions right now is the issue of VAT on double glazing – is VAT payable on the cost of double glazing or not?

Read on to understand the current rules of double glazing and VAT in 2022.

The Spring Statement

On 23rd March 2022 Chancellor Rishi Sunak, in his Spring Statement, announced the abolition of VAT on energy saving materials for homeowners. Sounds good so far! In the statement the Chancellor said:

“To help households improve energy efficiency and keep energy costs down – as well as supporting the UK’s long-term Net Zero ambitions – the government is extending the VAT relief available for the installation of energy saving materials (ESMs).

Taking advantage of Brexit freedoms, the government will include additional technologies and remove the complex eligibility conditions, reversing a Court of Justice of the European Union ruling that unnecessarily restricted the application of the relief.

The government will also increase the relief further by introducing a time-limited zero rate for the installation of ESMs”

The outshot of this meant that, from the 1st April 2022 and for a period of 5 years following, VAT would not be payable on the cost of installing energy efficiency measures in existing homes.

Great news that was welcomed throughout the industry … but NOT the double glazing industry!

Double Glazing Industry Left Out In The Cold

So, the installation of exactly what energy efficiency measures fall into this new zero rated category?

According to the official Government guidance they are as follows:

  • controls for central heating and hot water systems
  • draught stripping
  • insulation
  • solar panels
  • ground source heat pumps
  • air source heat pumps
  • micro combined heat and power units
  • wood-fuelled boilers
  • wind turbines
  • water turbines

Absolutely no mention of double glazing at all!

Double Glazing And VAT – An Industry Fuming

So, if you want to insulate around your windows it’s VAT free, you can add insulation and make improvements to heating and water system controls but, if you have old, leaky windows you’re going to have to pay VAT at the full 20% rate. No wonder the double glazing industry is not happy!

Double glazing is known to be one of the most effective, and easiest, ways to reduce energy consumption in a home. It’s true however that the majority of homes already have double glazing and it seems to be the Governments belief that double glazing is only being replaced through homeowner choice rather than by specific energy efficiency improvement objectives.

The argument the industry have is the fact that double glazing technology and materials have evolved over the years and a double glazing unit purchased in 2022 is proven to be so much more energy efficient than one installed a few years ago. Therefore by choosing to upgrade windows and doors to make a home more energy efficient should be encouraged in the same way that all other energy efficiency upgrades are.

Is it likely to change though … not in our opinion. I seems as though the industry continues to lobby Government but is having to accept this decision not to include double glazing in VAT incentives.

Now’s The Chance! 

On 13th March 2023 the Government launched and open consultation entitled: Call for evidence: VAT energy saving materials relief – improving energy efficiency and reducing carbon emissions.

This presents the industry with teh oportunity to convince the powers that be to include double glazing within the list of products eligible for VAT energy saving materials relief which would mean double glazing would not be subject to VAT.

It’s vital that the industry pulls together to submit a compelling case before the deadline of 31st May 2023 – the various trade associations are already in colaboration … watch this space!

VAT On Double Glazing – The Rules 

So, we’re very sorry to confirm that there is VAT on double glazing. The cost of replacing double glazing, windows and doors is subject to VAT at the standard rate. Therefore 20% VAT will be added on to the cost of windows and doors and their installation.

Double glazing does NOT fall into the category of energy efficiency measures that were announced as VAT free in the Chancellors spring statement of 2022.

As we said though, the industry continues to argue their case and lobby for change so, we’ll keep you informed should there be any positive developments.

Check for Double Glazing Grants 2022.