In 2008/09 the Annual Investment Allowance (AIA) of £50,000 was introduced, which applied to general plant and equipment. Expenditure up to the AIA can be written down by 100% in the year of purchase. Any expenditure in excess of that or assets brought forward are written down by 20% (writing down allowance). The AIA was increased to £100,000 from 2010/11.
Assuming your vehicles meet the HM Revenue & Customs definition of a ‘van’, they will qualify for the AIA.
Please note, from 2012/13 the AIA will reduce to just £25,000 and the writing down allowance to 18%. If your accounting period straddles two periods when the AIA was different, then the AIA will be prorated. So for instance, if your start date is 1 October 2011 and your period end is 30 September 2012, then your AIA will be:
(6/12 x £100,000) + (6/12 x £25,000) = £62,500
If you want to ensure you get as much tax relief as possible as early as possible, please feel free to contact your local TaxAssist Accountant who would be able to talk you through the Capital Allowances regime and work out the optimum time and amount to spend.