What is it?
The business rate is a property tax levied annually by Central Government on the occupier of every commercial property throughout England and Wales. It is collected on the Government’s behalf by local councils.
How is it calculated?
The liability for each owner is calculated by multiplying the rateable value for the property by the national uniform business rate (£0.48 for 2017/18). The rateable value is assessed by the Valuation Office Agency (a part of HM Revenue and Tax). After a long gap of 7 years, the next national re-assessment will take effect from 1st April 2017.
For the 2017 revaluation, the rateable value for each property should be roughly equal to its annual rental value on 1st April 2015 and calculated by reference to its physical condition on 1st April 2017.
How will it affect you?
Under the existing 2010 Scheme rateable values are assessed by reference to the property market on 1st April 2008. However under the 2017 Scheme they will be based on the rental values as at 1st April 2015.
There have been significant movements in rental value over this 7 year period. In 2008 the Country was entering a period of recession. The commercial property market was commencing its downward cycle. However all that had changed by April 2015. Economic conditions had improved: the property market was buoyant and rising.
The draft 2017 Rating List published by the Valuation Office Agency on 30th September 2016 indicates a significant increase in the rateable values of commercial property: nowhere more so than in the local markets within which Stirling Ackroyd operates.
What happens next?
The Government will publish its scheme for transitional relief (intended to provide a cushioning affect for those taxpayers suffering a significant change in tax liability) in the late Autumn and will confirm final rateable values shortly before the new Scheme commences on 1st April 2017. No appeals will be allowed before then.
Who should I contact for advice?
Robert Wilson, a Fellow of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, will be working with Stirling Ackroyd Clients over the coming months with a view to assisting in minimising their liability to increased Business Rate taxation. He may be contacted by email firstname.lastname@example.org or through your usual contact at Stirling Ackroyd