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What the 2024 Budget means for individuals and business owners



Unfortunately for business owners, companies were not at the top of Hunt’s priorities as he delivered his budget this lunchtime. Instead, Hunt opened his announcement with a pledge to “help families… [by giving] help in challenging times” with a budget for “long-term growth”. Here is a run-down of the measures announced aimed at achieving this:


  • Cut in National Insurance – As widely speculated before the budget, National Insurance will be cut by 2 percentage points, from 10% down to 8% from April 6th. Self-employment National Insurance will also be cut by 2 percentage points from 8% to 6%.
  • VAT Threshold increase - The VAT registration threshold will be increased to £90,000 from April; this is estimated to take “tens of thousands” of businesses out of paying VAT altogether. This represents the first increase to the VAT threshold in seven years.
  • Child Benefit changes – Higher income child benefit charge which means the payment begins to taper when one parent earns over £50,000, will be changed to a household income basis instead of an individual basis. This will require a significant reform to the tax system and consultations on this will begin from 2026. From this April, the threshold for receiving child benefit will be raised to £60,000 and the top of the taper will go up to £80,000.
  • Alcohol duty – In an effort to support the hospitality industry, the freeze on alcohol duty which was due to end in August this year, has been extended until 1 February 2025. This is estimated to cut costs for 38,000 pubs across the UK.
  • Growth Guarantee Scheme – £200m will be given to the Growth Guarantee Scheme, aimed at helping SMEs access the funding they need. This is a continuation and extension of the existing Recovery Loans Scheme.
  • British ISA - the government has announced the introduction of a new ‘British ISA’, which will allow individuals to invest £5,000 in British firms. This ISA allowance will be on top of the existing £20,000 ISA allowance.
  • Debt Relief Orders – The existing £90 charge levied on indebted individuals to enter into a DRO has been abolished. Debt Relief Orders are available in England, Wales and NI.
  • Fuel duty - Fuel duty will be frozen for the next 12 months; the "temporary" 5p cut on fuel duty which was due to end this month will also remain in force.
  • Tax relief for the film industry - a new tax credit will be introduced for UK films with budgets of up to £15m. Temporary tax reliefs of 45% for touring and orchestral productions, and 40% for non-touring productions were introduced during the covid pandemic; these tax reliefs will be made permanent.
  • Tax treatment of furnished holiday lets – The tax breaks offered to second home owners when letting out their properties to holiday makers rather than to long-term tenants is to be abolished.
  • Multiple dwellings relief – The existing relief on stamp duty when purchasing more than one property was originally intended to support investment in the private rental sector, however, this is now being abolished due to “being regularly abused”.
  • Higher rate of property CGT reduced – The higher rate of CGT for residential property is being reduced from 28% to 24%.
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