VAT treatment of storage facilities
Produced in partnership with Martin Scammell
VAT treatment of storage facilities

The following Tax practice note Produced in partnership with Martin Scammell provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • VAT treatment of storage facilities
  • Why does this matter?
  • What do landlords need to do?
  • Why was the measure introduced?
  • What were the EU vires for the measure?
  • What is taxable under these provisions?
  • The basic provisions
  • The exceptions
  • Storage of means of transport
  • Outright disposals
  • More...

IP COMPLETION DAY: 11pm (GMT) on 31 December 2020 marks the end of the Brexit transition/implementation period entered into following the UK’s withdrawal from the EU. At this point in time (referred to in UK law as ‘IP completion day’), key transitional arrangements come to an end and significant changes begin to take effect across the UK’s legal regime. This document contains guidance on subjects impacted by these changes. Before continuing your research, see Practice Note: What does IP completion day mean for Tax?

This Practice Note is about the VAT treatment of storage facilities.

Why does this matter?

The provision of storage facilities became generally subject to VAT from 1 October 2012, but most businesses affected by the change did not realise this, because HMRC and the government long persisted in describing the measure as about ‘self-storage’.

In practice, the issue often goes unidentified even now, while HMRC has appeared to show little interest in the matter, other than in relation to actual self-storage operators.

Since, in HMRC’s view, taxation applies by reference to the actual use of premises, not their intended use, landlords ought to monitor their tenant’s activities and/or to insert additional clauses in leases and licences so that they know where taxation applies.

What do landlords need to do?

Landlords need take no action if a letting is taxable anyway, for example because of an option to

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