Business Rates

Case Study

"Having been instructed to check and re-assess the Business Rates on two warehouses in South Essex occupied by our client for his business, Eyesurvey principal Leslie J Long FRICS entered into negotiations with the Valuation Officer.

After many months, including a joint measurement of the premises with the VO, we were able to correct errors in the floor areas they had used. Next we discussed the actual charging rates per square metre applied on those floor areas by the VO, and ensured that many inconsistencies were rectified.

The negotiations have just been successfully settled. This has resulted in a reduction in the Rateable Value of the premises from £72,000 down to only £58,500, and which will be back-dated to 1st April 2012.

Our client is very pleased with the outcome of our work for him. He now looks forward to receiving substantial rebates on the Business rates payable, and already paid, and with statutory interest (net of tax) due on those amounts."

Business Rates – Are You Paying Too Much?

The government or more specifically the Department for Communities and Local Government reviewed the rating system in recent years. This was put in place to explain the process and challenged the current system for assessing business rates.

 

A view was taken that the current appeals system does not entirely provide an efficient process for business ratepayers to firstly understand, but secondly challenge their rateable values. This has certainly delayed possible refunds for businesses who are paying too much.

The review was put in place to make the process more transparent, and make the formal process of challenging the rate charge easier. This of course would have had an impact on how professional surveyors conduct a ratings review for businesses, but a very positive opportunity for business to receive accurate valuations.

 

Although all respondents to the review were in agreement to a reform, the view was it was part of a bigger issue, so the government made a decision to halt the reform in favour of an investigation into business rates administration, and considering a longer term reform to take effect in 2017.

This is good news for businesses, but doesn’t solve the immediate issue of how to administer a review and potential reduction in rates for many thousands of businesses that could be paying far too much for their business rates.

 

At Eyesurvey, we have seen an increase in enquiries from business owners questioning their rates, and asking us to provide the expertise and evidence for them, as they believe they are paying too much, and we find in many cases this is far too common.

Rates Hike!

If you feel your business rates seem too high or you feel you are not being charged correctly, please give Eyesurvey a call. Our friendly and helpful team are always on hand to offer advice on which course of action you should take. It is completely free and you may find we could save you money. Even if your business rates have been reviewed recently, and you feel the outcome is not justified, do not delay, give us a call today.

Have you ever considered Appealing against your Business rates Assessment?

The Daily Telegraph recently reported newly-published figures from the British Retail Consortium which show that the Government is expecting to pay £4.2bn back to businesses that successfully appeal against their business rates bill. This tax brings in roughly £25bn for the Treasury every year.

 

Since the latest revaluation of business rates was enforced in 2010, there have been appeals on 590,850 of the 1.8m commercial properties in the UK eligible to pay business rates - around ONE-THIRD! Business rates on all types of non-domestic premises are calculated through a valuation, made by the Valuation Office, of Britain’s property and the annual rate of inflation.

The revaluation of property is scheduled to take place every five years, but the Government postponed the valuation that was due to take place in 2013 and enforced in 2015, claiming that it would cause uncertainty for businesses.

 

Slightly earlier changes in the rules have limited the period over which back-dating can be applied. Changes in the 2017 Valuation List, together with the new system of "Check, Challenge and Appeal" has also brought in more complication, not less!

 

When working on behalf of our Small Business clients, we regularly find floor areas inaccurately calculated, items such as parking included, which is not part of the premises occupied, along with other errors.

 

You can actually carry out your own comparison of your assessment, through the VO website www.voa.gsi.gov.uk - at no cost!