May 19, 2020

With little time to prepare for the Coronavirus lockdown and subsequent site closures, it has certainly been an unsettling time for self-employed construction workers.

That’s why it was particularly interesting to learn about the Pay It Forward Scheme for self-employed contractors affected by Coronavirus, launched by house builder Taylor Wimpey.

Pay It Forward provides an interest-free payment of up to £600 each month for three months, to be recovered against future work. It’s designed to help self-employed individuals who either do not benefit from the Governments Self-employed Income Support Scheme or who will experience significant hardship before that scheme makes payment.

In a statement, Taylor Wimpey’s Chief Executive Pete Redfern said: “During the financial crisis in 2008-2010, many of Taylor Wimpey’s subcontractors were unable to continue trading or operating, and the individuals employed by them left the industry. In the face of COVID-19, we believe that the Government’s support scheme for self-employed and small businesses is excellent and we want to play our part and help to bridge the gap between now and when the assistance schemes come into effect. Our partners matter to us and we believe that those relationships are key to our future success.

“The financial crisis showed us that relationships are tested and can be made stronger, and that loyalty is rewarded both when times are most challenging, and when companies and individuals do the right thing. Whilst we, like all businesses, face uncertainty and challenges ahead, we have come into this crisis in a strong position. We are a cautiously run business with a strong and well capitalised balance sheet, which enables us to offer some additional support and assistance to our subcontractors during this challenging time.”

The Pay It Forward scheme is making advance payments for future work via the subcontractor to self-employed individuals. Individuals must work for subcontractor firms approved by Taylor Wimpey. The scheme is capped at £5m which enables support to around 2,750 individuals.

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