What is the purpose of the Discretionary Business Grants?
The discretionary fund will support businesses who have fixed costs and have been affected by COVID-19. The intention of the grant is to support small businesses with high premises-related costs that fell outside of the original grant scheme.
HMO landlords have fixed costs (Council Tax, water rates, utility bills). HMO landlords who have had a COVID-19 related drop in rental income may wish to consider applying for the discretionary grant. The applications are assessed on a points basis. Applications opened on 01 June 2020 so if you intend on applying, do not delay. Grants are likely to be awarded only in exceptional circumstances so you will need to prove that you have had a drop in rental income.
This grant is aimed at small businesses with ongoing fixed property-related costs. Local authorities are to to prioritise businesses in shared spaces, regular market traders, small charity properties that would meet the criteria for Small Business Rates Relief, and bed and breakfasts that pay council tax rather than business rates. But local authorities may choose to make payments to other businesses based on local economic need. The allocation of funding will be at the discretion of local authorities.
Businesses must be small, under 50 employees, and they must also be able to demonstrate that they have seen a significant drop of income due to Coronavirus restriction measures.
For further information and to make an application, visit your Local Authority website.