Budget 2020 winners and losers revealed – how does it affect you – The Sun

RISHI Sunak delivered his first Budget as chancellor today – but how does it affect your finances?

From minimum wage boosts to cigarette price hikes, today's Budget also had a special focus on dealing with the impact on coronavirus.

⚠️ Read our coronavirus live blog for the latest news & updates

Here we round-up the key winners and losers.


Workers – minimum wage rise, national insurance cut, and sick pay for self-isolating

Employees who receive the national living wage will see their salary increase to £10.50 an hour by 2024.

In today's Budget, the Chancellor also announced plans to lower the age you have to be before you're entitled to it from 25 to 21 by 2024.

It is currently set at £8.21 per hour but he confirmed that it is due to increase by 6.2 per cent to £8.72 per hour from April 1, 2020.

The Budget has also seen the National Insurance threshold rise from £8,632 to £9,500.

This is a typical tax cut of £104 for 31million employees, including the self-employed.

While millions of self-employed workers have been promised sick pay if they have to self-isolate.

Read our national living wage story, national insurance tax cut, and sick pay stories for the full details.

Drinkers – alcohol duties frozen

The duty on spirits, beer, cider, and wine has been frozen in today's Budget – something that will be welcome news for those who enjoy a tipple (of course, please drink responsibly).

Experts say it's only the second time in almost 20 years that every single alcohol duty has been frozen.

Generally speaking, the duty on spirits automatically goes up every Budget unless the Chancellor freezes or cuts it.

If they hasn't have been frozen, they would have risen in line with the retail prices (RPI) measure of inflation, which is currently forecast at 2.8 per cent.

Read our alcohol duty story for the full details.

Universal Credit claimants – more time to repay loans

Struggling families on Universal Credit who take out an advance payment will soon be able to pay it back over two years instead of the current 12 months.
Meanwhile, the maximum amount that can be taken off your benefits to pay to repay the loan is also being reduced from 30 per cent to 25 per cent.

Read our Universal Credit story for the full details.

We're £250 better off – but want more help for working families

DAD of one, David Demetriou-Smith, will be around £250 per year better off thanks to today’s increase to the National Insurance threshold in the Budget.

The 30-year old said he and his wife Victoria, 27, should both have an extra £125 each in their pockets after the announcement.

He said: "We appreicate the extra money and it'll go towards our household bills and our son Harry's nursery fees."

David said he was hoping for some announcements to help with childcare and paid leave for parents when they have a baby.

He said: "In the circumstances, I can understand why there wasn't much to help parents as the coronavirus seems to be the most important thing right now.

"It would've been good to see help for parents with kids aged under three, as they don't get any free hours. 

"I also think more should be done for paternity leave – which I believe should be at least six weeks full pay for men.

“Because me and my wife Victoria earn £70,000 between us, we don’t qualify for free hours for Harry until he is three.

“It feels like parents like us are penalised for having children, and if we had a second and had to pay for two children in nursery, the cost might be more than one of our salaries. 

David, a social worker from Cheshire, drives a lot for his job and spends around £70 a week on petrol at the moment. 

He said he was relieved petrol prices did not go up as expected.

David said: "As I drive a lot for work, it was reassuring to hear petrol prices were not going to go up as we thought they were."


Mobile users – cash boost for 4G

Around 95 per cent of homes across the UK are to get better mobile phone reception after a £510million deal to boost 4G coverage was confirmed in the Budget today.

Those living in Scotland, Northern Ireland, and Wales are expected to see the biggest improvements to mobile reception.

Read our mobile signal boost story for more details.

Broadband users – faster broadband promised

Homes across the UK are to benefit from better broadband speeds by 2025 thanks to a £5billion cash injection.

See our broadband story for more information.

Drivers – fuel duty freeze and pothole help

Fuel duty has been frozen for the tenth year in a victory for The Sun's Keep It Down campaign.

It means the scheduled 2p-a-litre tax rise at the pumps due next month will be scrapped.

Britain's roads will be given a massive makeover and there's a £2.5billion fund announced to fix potholes.

See our fuel duty and potholes stories for further details.

Women – tampon tax cut

The much hated tampon tax has been abolished in today's Budget. It means women will no longer have to pay 5 per cent VAT on all sanitary products.

This will save the average woman almost £40 over their lifetime – with a tax cut of 7p on a pack of 20 tampons and 5p on a pack of 12 pads.

Read our tampon tax story for more.


Smokers – cigarette prices hiked

Smokers will pay an extra 27p for a pack of 20 cigarettes from 6pm tonight after the chancellor announced he's hiking the tobacco tax in today's Budget.

It's being upped by an extra 2 per cent above the current inflation rate of 1.8 per cent.

First-time buyer – 'we feel swept under the carpet'

EMMA Baldry, 30, is about to buy her first home with her partner and was hoping for some new schemes or incentives for first-time buyers to be announced in the Budget today.

The warranty administrator works for a vehicle dealer and earns £20,000 a year and a monthly bonus of between £100 and £250.

Her partner Dave, 25, is a sales advisor for a motorsport company earning £19,500.

The couple live with Dave’s mum in Kent and pay her £150 a month rent, so they have been able to save a deposit of £21,500 over the past two years.

Emma said: "The only way we’ve managed to save our deposit by living with Dave’s mum but also by being really careful with our shopping. 

“My disposable income is really tight, I have a budget of £10 a day for the month and everything else is put into the house fund.”

The couple are expecting to pay up to £210,000 for their first home and are looking for a two-bed house in Ashford in Kent.

Emma said: “To have no new announcements is disheartening for first-time buyers who would have been hoping for some good news today.

"On the other hand I am really happy that stamp duty discounts for us will remain in place for the moment.

"I would've like to see something to make buying locally easier and cheaper and I would've liked to see a way to help people like us to save for a deposit.

"There could've been much more for first-time buyers who need help getting onto the property ladder.

"It's not easy, I can't but think we've been 'swept under the carpet' for this Budget."

The tax of hand-rolled tobacco will rise by another 6 per cent above the rate of inflation, adding 67p to the price of a 30g pack.

See our tobacco tax story for more.

Overseas property buyers – stamp duty hiked by 2 per cent

Overseas property buyers will be hit with an extra 2 per cent stamp duty fee on homes purchased in England and Northern Ireland from April 2021.

Read our stamp duty story to find out the full info.

Savers – children's savings limit increase 'only giveaway'

While the Budget saw the annual Junior Isa and Child Trust Fund savings limits more than doubled to £9,000, there were no tangible giveaways to help savers stump up extra cash.

Nimesh Shah, partner at accounting and tax advisory firm Blick Rothenberg, said: "The only giveaway for savers was an increase to the Junior Isa limit to £9,000.

"At a time when the stock markets have tumbled and interest rates cut, pensioners and savers may have been looking to the government for some help."

Homeowners and renters – 'an opportunity missed'

While the overseas stamp duty hike should help more people in the UK to get onto the property market, experts says these investors typically purchased expensive properties around the capital.

So other than that there's no real help for first-time buyers aiming to get onto the market, homeowners hoping to cut moving costs, or for renters hoping for greater protection.

Jeremy Leaf, a north London estate agent and a former RICS residential chairman, said: "Apart from the 2 per cent surcharge on non-UK property buyers from next year, there was no action on stamp duty.

"An opportunity was missed to improve accessibility to the market for first-time buyers and downsizers who are causing a log jam at the top and bottom of the market.

"This would have improved activity, which is good for the whole economy. Clearly, housing is not up there in terms of priorities for the chancellor at the present time."

See first-time buyer Emma Baldry's story in the box above – she told us she feels "swept under the carpet" by the Budget.

Zero-hour workers – no help provided

It was hoped the Budget might do something to provide increased right to those struggling on zero hour contracts but nothing was announced.

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