Architecture is all about innovation and development, which encompass experimenting with techniques and technology. As architecture sector thrives on research and development, it inculcates various activities which qualify for R&D credit claims. Every time Architects create something, its development goes through multiple processes of experimentation with technology while overcoming many challenges to create what is designed.
Designing and creation are part of architecture and qualify for research and development claims, but unfortunately, most architecture firms do not realise this. As a result, most architecture firms miss out on huge amounts of R&D credit by not claiming.
Does Your Architecture Project Qualify For R&D Credit Claim?
Two main eligibility criteria set by HMRC for R&D credit claim are:
• Your project is seeking scientific or technological advancement.
Any project that improved any existing process or added knowledge in the field of architecture is eligible for an R&D credit claim. You can also claim against intellectual property.
• Overcame scientific or technological uncertainty
Finding a solution to the scientific or technical challenge that was not readily available comes under an R&D project.
In the broader terms project qualifies for R&D when it is contributing to the innovation in a way that its benefit is not limited to the firm only, but it is adding something to the fields of science and technology. The architecture sector encompasses various disciplines like software development, fluid dynamics, material sciences, and thermal performance. It also inculcates finding solutions to improve processes like increasing energy efficiency, enhancing structural characteristics and sustainability. Architects have to go through various challenges, and to tackle those challenges, they have to push boundaries blurring lines between architecture and engineering, and that’s where research and development come into the picture. Even creating unique designs, advances in construction and testing of prototypes also comes under R&D.
If your architecture firm is undertaking any such activity or has done an R&D project in the past two financial years, you are eligible to claim R&D credit.
What Counts As R&D In Architecture Sector?
Like other sectors, architecture has also been evolving, and today architecture also involves risk-taking for innovation. Qualifying costs within architectural projects for R&D credit claims include all expenditures incurred to resolve scientific or technological uncertainties. For example, an architect faces a challenge that conventional methods cannot resolve, therefore, he needs to seek a solution with the help of research and technology. So this creation of a new method or process to resolve scientific or technological challenges qualifies for an R&D credit claim. Your R&D project does not need to be successful necessarily. Even if your desired outcomes have not been achieved still, you can claim R&D credits for that project.
Examples of Qualifying R&D Activities in Architecture
Following are a few other activities that most of the architectural firms are undertaking, not realising that they qualify for R&D credit claim:
- Enhancing the performance of the process, product or material with the help of technology.
- Finding new uses of materials
- Research to find a solution to deal with design restrictions
- Finding environment-friendly methods
- Creation and testing of prototypes
- Software development for resolving technical problems
- Resolving technological uncertainties
- Development of sustainable architecture
- Overcoming structural challenges and creation of unique structures
- Development of new environment friendly materials like bio-plastics
The creation of designs using conventional methods and techniques that face the process’s usual complexities is unlikely to qualify for the R&D credit claim.
Why Should You Claim?
Qualifying architecture firms can receive R&D incentives in the form of relief from Corporation Tax or cash credits as a reward for your contribution to advancement in science and technology. Unfortunately, businesses in this sector do not take advantage of this. Like other innovative businesses, businesses in architecture also needs the benefit of R&D tax relief and R&D credit to maintain their global position in this competitive business world. R&D credit also helps companies streamline their cashflows, and you can also reinvest this credit in innovation.
How Can Square Finance Help You?
Square Finance is a team of R&D tax credit specialists who have the skills to spot hidden qualifying activities in your business. We have helped various sectors receive the maximum incentive within a few days. Contact our R&D experts now to find out if your projects qualify for the claim. We ensure you receive the full reward for your efforts.
Unfortunately, a very less percentage of architecture firms claim their R&D incentives.
Most architecture firms miss out on R&D incentives because they are unaware of what they do qualifies for the claim. For architects, finding innovative solutions is part of their job. Still, they are unaware that they can get a considerable amount of tax relief or payable credits against this innovation.