As a general rule construction works and alterations to existing buildings attract VAT at the standard rate. There are, however, some exceptions to this. At the time of going to print, the exceptions are summarised as:
- Construction of new qualifying dwellings and communal residential buildings, and certain new buildings used by charities - Zero Rate VAT 0% (Section 3)
- Conversion for a housing association of a non-residential building into a qualifying dwelling or communal residential building – Zero Rate VAT 0% (Section 6)
- Other conversions of premises to a different residential use - Reduced Rate VAT 5% (Section 7)
- Renovation or alteration of empty residential premises - Reduced Rate VAT 5% (Section 8)
- Approved alterations to listed dwellings and communal residential buildings, and certain listed buildings used by charities - Zero Rate VAT 0% (Section 9)
- Alterations to suit the condition of people with disabilities – Zero Rate VAT 0% (Notice 701/7 VAT reliefs for people with disabilities)
- Installation of energy saving materials; and grant funded heating system measures and qualifying security goods - Reduced Rate VAT 5% (Notice 708/6 Energy-saving materials)
- Development of residential caravan parks - Zero Rate VAT 0% (Section 20)
- First time gas and electricity connections - Zero Rate VAT 0% (Notice 701/19 Fuel and power)
- Installation of mobility aids for the elderly for use in domestic accommodation - Reduced Rate VAT 5% (Section 26)

For further clarification and details see http://customs.hmrc.gov.uk/
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