Supplies of caravans

By Tolley

The following Value Added Tax guidance note by Tolley provides comprehensive and up to date tax information covering:

  • Supplies of caravans
  • What is a caravan?
  • Supplies connected with caravan pitches
  • Residential accommodation
  • Supplies of caravans as holiday accommodation
  • Supplies of parking provided with caravans
  • Supplies of removable contents

This guidance note explains the VAT treatment of supplies of caravans and providing holiday accommodation in caravans.

Notice 701/20 ; VATA 1994, Sch 8, Group 9, item 1
What is a caravan?

The Caravan Sites and Control of Development Act 1960 and The Caravan Sites Act 1968 provide a definition of what constitutes a caravan. The legal definitions is:

“Any structure designed or adapted for human habitation that is capable of being moved from one place to another (whether being towed or by being transported on a motor vehicle so designed or adapted).”

The caravan must be no more than:

  • 20 metres long excluding the drawbar
  • 6.8 metres wide
  • 3.05 metres high when measured internally from the lowest floor level to the highest point on the ceiling

If it is a twin unit caravan, it must be:

“...composed of not more than two sections separately constructed and designed to be assembled on site by means of bolts, clamps or other devices.”

In order for the caravan to be designed or adapted for human habitation it must have the attributes that constitute a dwelling, eg a kitchen, bathroom and sleeping accommodation.

The word caravan would also includes a mobile home, static caravan or a residential caravan, etc. However, it would not include a motor home / motor caravan.

If the caravan fails to meet the conditions outlined above then it may still qualify for zero-rating as a dwelling. More information can be found in the Zero-rating the construction of a new building guidance note.

VAT treatment of supplies of caravans

With effect from 6 April 2013, The VAT treatment will depend upon the size of the caravan in question.

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