Grants and funding available during the pandemic

The UK Government has introduced financial support for businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic and in recent Propertymark webinars, experts from various fields provided in depth information on what grants and funding are available and how to access them.

Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS)

CBILS is a new scheme that can provide loans of up to £5m for smaller businesses across the UK who are experiencing lost or deferred revenues leading to disruptions to their cash flow.
CBILS loans consist of:

  • Term loans
  • Overdrafts
  • Invoice financing
  • Asset finance

Loans can be given to businesses with a turnover of up to £45 million among other eligibility criteria set out by the lender. Find out how to put an application together to speed up the acceptance process watch our How to successfully access funding during a crisis webinar.

Grants

The UK Government has given funding to local authorities in order to supply businesses with two different types of grants:

  • Small business grants fund
    Eligible businesses in England in receipt of either Small Business Rates Relief (SBRR) or Rural Rates Relief (RRR) in the business rates system will be eligible for a payment of £10,000.
  • Retail, hospitality and leisure grants fund
    Eligible businesses in England in receipt of the Expanded Retail Discount (which covers retail, hospitality, and leisure) with a rateable value of less than £51,000 will be eligible for a cash grant of £10,000 or £25,000 per property.

You do not have to apply for these grants, your local authority will be in touch if your business is eligible.

The person who, according to the billing authority’s records, was the ratepayer for the property on the 11 March 2020 will be paid the grant money. Management agents and landlords are urged to support local government in quickly identifying the correct ratepayer if it is believed the information they hold is incorrect.

The UK Government has produced a COVID-19: business support grant funding – guidance for businesses that sets out details of the Small Business Grants Fund (SBGF) and Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund (RHLGF). Can we include our grant document or is that just for members?

Furloughed staff – Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme will be in place until the end of June, but it may be extended if necessary and employers can use this scheme anytime during this period. It is designed to help employers whose operations have been severely affected by Coronavirus to retain their employees and protect the UK economy. 

Employees can rotate their staff through furlough, but each employee must have to be furloughed for a minimum of three weeks in order to be eligible. When employees return to work they must be taken off furlough.

HOW EMPLOYERS CAN ACCESS THE SCHEME

Employers can access the scheme through the Government's online portal which is due to open on 20 April 2020.

WHAT INFORMATION EMPLOYERS WILL NEED TO MAKE A CLAIM

Employers should discuss with their staff and make any changes to the employment contract by agreement. Employers may need to seek legal advice on the process. If sufficient numbers of staff are involved, it may be necessary to engage collective consultation processes to procure agreement to changes to terms of employment.

To claim, you will need:

  • your employer PAYE reference number
  • the number of employees being furloughed
  • National Insurance Numbers for the furloughed employees
  • Names of the furloughed employees
  • Payroll/employee number for the furloughed employees (optional)
  • your Self Assessment Unique Taxpayer Reference or Corporation Tax Unique Taxpayer Reference or Company Registration Number
  • the claim period (start and end date)
  • amount claimed (per the minimum length of furloughing of 3 consecutive weeks)
  • your bank account number and sort code
  • your contact name
  • your phone number

Find out more by registering to hear from Sarah Turnball, Head of HR at Propertymark where she looks at furloughing rules and expands as the legislation and the details continue to evolve in our recent What furloughing means for your business webinar.

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