Labour shortages and the increasing cost of materials have plagued the construction industry during a problematic pandemic period, but the latest Construction Purchasing Managers Index shows that the sector saw its fastest rate of growth in eight months during February.
This has been largely attributed to the lifting of Plan B restrictions in their entirety as well as a buoyant housing market, with residential construction now outperforming the commercial sector.
However, with construction workers one of the first back to work to fuel the pandemic property market boom, tax refund experts, RIFT Tax Refunds, have revealed how they are also some of the most likely to be owed money by HMRC.
It’s estimated that one in three of us are actually owed money by HMRC, that’s almost 11 million people across the nation.
However, RIFT’s research shows that the proportion of us owed a tax refund is far higher when it comes to those in full-time employment across the construction industry – as high as 83%.
Of the 1.39m people employed full-time across British construction, RIFT estimates that just over 1.15m could be owed a tax refund.
With the average one year claim sitting at £1,244 per person, that’s just shy of a staggering £1.44bn owed to those who kept Britain building during one of the most difficult periods in recent history.
Both the South East (£216.3m) and London (£216.1m) are thought to be home to the largest levels of tax owed to construction workers, while the East of England (£177.5m), the North West (£168.8m) and Scotland (£124.8m) could also see some of the highest sums refunded to workers in the sector.
Even in the North East where the level of tax owed to construction workers is estimated to be at its lowest, RIFT still estimates that they could be eligible to claim as much as £44.4m.
CEO of RIFT Tax Refunds, Bradley Post, commented: “It’s fair to say that the pandemic has been extremely challenging for a number of sectors but the construction industry has weathered a particularly fierce storm, having already suffered from a shortage in labour and a sharp increase in the cost of materials following Brexit.
All the while, the property market has been booming and yet further pressure has been applied to deliver a consistent level of new residential housing in order to service this unprecedented demand.
Rather than shy away from the task at hand, we’ve seen the construction industry dig in and deliver and the likelihood is that many are now owed more than just a pat on the back for their monumental efforts over the last two years.
There’s a very strong chance that those working within the industry could be owed a tax refund if they paid for their own travel or wider expenses while working on site, regardless of whether they did so on a full-time or self-employed basis.
The total amount owed could run into the billions of pounds across Britain and so it’s well worth a check to see if you qualify.”