Looking for something specific?

Need to Know: Business Rate Changes

post-image 12th October 2016

What is happening with Business Rates and their revaluation? Every year, non-domestic properties in the UK are obliged to pay a business rate – a charge on a business that’s based on the rateable value of the property or properties that the business occupies – this is calculated by the Valuation Office Agency (VOA) and collected by the local authority.  The rateable value is then combined with a ‘multiplier’ which is set by central government.  Business rates (rateable values and the multiplier) are re-valued every five years, and the next revaluation of non-domestic properties in England, Scotland and Wales will take effect on 1 April 2017, having been postponed for two years, from April 2015.

Details of the 2017 revaluation – including indicative rates for business properties – have recently been issued, along with an important consultation on the proposed introduction of transitional relief.  There are a number of other changes to various aspects of the business rates system.  In summary:

  • Rateable value changes for 2017 will vary across England.  In broad terms, they will increase in London and decrease in other parts of the country.
  • The thresholds for small business rate relief are being extended.

The Government is introducing a new system for business to challenge or appeal against a revaluation figure. This is called Check, Challenge, Appeal and the intention is that businesses can check their valuations at an early stage.
A transitional relief scheme will almost certainly be introduced, to help businesses adjust to the changes in business rates – the Government is consulting on the rates of relief that will apply to small, medium and large properties.

It’s clear that the 2017 revaluation will have a significant effect on South Bank as, in general, business rates will rise – and some properties will see large increases.  This is in common with other parts of London and reflects the changes in rental values over the past few years.  A number of business organisations in London, including the Business Improvement Districts, are working together to submit a proposal to Government, with the aim of minimising the impact of any rise in business rates on key economic neighbourhoods.  This will demonstrate the economic significance of London to the rest of the country, and detail the very real negative impacts that rate rises could have at this time, especially post Brexit.

You can see the full details of the changes, and how to check or challenge your business rates, by using the interactive report below.  Further details on the revaluation are covered in this helpful presentation, prepared by Union Street Partners  – a local firm of chartered surveyors and property consultants who prepared this on a pro bono basis for South Bank BID.

The consultation on transitional relief runs until 26 October. Government then has until 31 December 2016 to make a decision on what levels of relief it will introduce from April 2017.  This means that final valuations won’t be confirmed until then.  In the new year, South Bank BID and We Are Waterloo Business Improvement District will hold a joint briefing on the revaluation and the implications for and impact on businesses in the neighbourhood.

Questions?  This is an important and complicated issue, with much that’s still uncertain.  If any South Bank business has a question about the 2017 revaluation, then the team at South Bank BID will do their best to help you.  Please contact us by email and we’ll get back to you.

Key changes? 

  • The total rateable value change is an increase of 10.6% across England and Scotland. The prices to London’s businesses are increasing by 22.8%, and they are decreasing marginally in the North of the country.
  • The main change in this revaluation, aside from the rates, is the ability for a business to challenge or appeal against a revaluation decision. This pathway is called Check, Challenge, Appeal. This means that businesses can check their valuations at an early stage, in order to alleviate the pressure from a high number of later challenges to valuation decisions.

How will it affect my business? The revaluation has the potential to greatly affect every business in the UK, as there could be (and in this case, is) a drastic change in the amount of money a business will have to pay. In this case, each South Bank BID member will see their business rates become more costly.

You can see the full details of the changes and how to challenge or check your business rates in the report below.

See the full interactive report below: 

To download the full Business Rates Revaluation Report 2017 from Parliament.uk, please click here.