Government support for architecture practices during COVID-19

Mar 25, 2020
  • Article by Tili Bensley-Nettheim

What does the $189 billion dollar stimulus package from the Federal Government mean for small and medium-sized architecture practices? 

As the COVID-19 pandemic works its way across the globe and through industries, clarity has been the catchcry of businesses already reeling from the pandemic’s financial fall-out. 

“There is an economic crisis that has been created by unprecedented and unforeseen circumstances and this requires unprecedented action by Government,” said Management for Design co-founder and principal Robert Peake, which provides financial and business management services to design professionals.

To this end, on 22 March the Federal Government announced a $189 billion dollar economic boost to soften the financial blow of the pandemic.

This is ADR’s summary of those initiatives that will provide support to small and medium-sized architecture and design practices.

Cash flow boost

Support Summary 

  • The minimum support is $20,000 and the maximum is $100,000.
  • Practices can receive refunds equal to 200 per cent of the tax withheld for employees for the third and fourth quarters of the 2020 financial year.

Eligibility

  • Eligible if your practice has an annual turnover of under $50m and employs workers.
  • If you are the sole employee of your architecture or design practice, you are not eligible for this support. 

Timing 

  • If your activity statements are lodged quarterly, this support will be received in 3 instalments: 25 per cent in April; 50 per cent in July; 25 per cent in October.
  • If you lodge monthly, you will receive the support in 7 instalments: 25 per cent in April; 8.3 per cent in May; 8.3 per cent in June; 20.8 per cent in July; 12.5 per cent in August; 12.5 per cent in September; 12.5 per cent in October. 

Instant asset write-off

Support summary 

  • Practices can purchase assets up to $150,000 in value and write them off in their next business activity statement.

Eligibility

  • Eligible if your business has an annual turnover of under $500 million. 

States and territories 

As well as Federal support, states and territories are offering their own stimulus initiatives. Changes to infrastructure spending on government building are woven throughout these initiatives and represent potential opportunities for architects. 

For more detail on state and territory initiatives head to the Association of Consulting Architects Australia (ACA)

More resources 

Read more details directly from the government, including information on additional support opportunities.   

The ACA is releasing a series of case studies detailing how their member practices are dealing with COVID-19, including Taylor Robinson Chaney Broderick (TRCB), Fulton Trotter Architects and TheFulcrum.Agency.

ADR compiled 19 tips for architects and designers currently working at home.

As always, we’re here to help. Please get in touch with your new projects or to talk about the impact of COVID-19 on your practice. Contact us at elisa.scarton@niche.com.au and tili.bensley@niche.com.au.

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