With the 2017 Rating Revaluation rapidly approaching, it is important that all business owners and occupiers are aware that there will be new rateable values for all commercial properties throughout the UK and the key dates are as follows:-

30th September 2016

Publication of the new draft rateable value assessments.

It is important that the draft assessment is looked at as it is accepted that it could contain mistakes and drafting errors and there will be a limited period of time following the release of information for errors to be corrected and appeals to be lodged.

Impey & Company can assist with the initial review of the draft assessment and provide guidance.

December 2016

Confirmation of Uniform Business Rate.  This is the multiplier figure that will be applied to the new rateable value.  Once this has been issued, it will be possible to calculate the new rates liability and it will be possible to assess whether the new business rate will be higher or lower than the current rate liability.

The Valuation Officer will announce the transitional arrangements and either rate increases or decreases will be phased in.

March 2017

Rate bills will be issued by the Local Authority.

Impey & Company will have advised in connection with potential rates liability and the estimated bill, but in March 2017 the bill will be issued and rates will then become payable.

April 2017

The revaluation will come into force and the appeal process will become operational.  Under the new system, there will be a six month window for lodging appeals and it is likely (yet to be announced) that the Valuation Office will make a charge for the lodging of an appeal.

The new appeal process puts the onus on the ratepayer to prove their case and where appeals are not proved, they will be struck out, ie. there will no longer be an opportunity of lodging an appeal and then waiting to see what happens.  If the appeal is not fully supported by evidence, then the Valuation Office will simply strike out.

Starting 1st April, 2017 Small Business Rate Relief (SBRR) will permanently double from 50% to 100% and increase the thresholds to benefit a greater number of businesses.  Businesses with a property with a rateable value of £12,000 and below will receive 100% relief.  Business with a property with a rateable value between £12,000 and £15,000 will receive tapered relief.   The threshold will also increase for the higher rate standard business rates multiplier to a rateable value of £51,000.  This will reduce business rates for many small businesses – including some high street shops.

The lodging of a rating appeal is no longer simply down to completing a form on line and if ratepayers hope to be successful in connection with their appeal, they will need to take professional advice.

Impey & Company have 45 years experience in dealing with rating appeals in the Stockport area.  We would recommend, in view of the deadline date and the short period of time for lodging an appeal, that ratepayers obtain the draft assessment as soon as it is available from the 30th September onwards.

Impey & Company can log in, if required, to obtain the draft appeal in order to advise at the appropriate time.

If you require further information, please contact our rating specialist Norman Benton MRICS

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