Our ratepayer clients down south will have no doubt read with interest the Chancellor’s Spring Statement on 13th March (as reported by City AM newspaper) where it was announced that the UK Government will bring forward the next revaluation of business rates by one year from 2022 to 2021.
Many Scottish ratepayers will be aware of the Barclay Report (see link) where one of the main recommendations was 3 yearly revaluation cycles, commencing 1 April 2022.
Whilst Scotland and the rest of the UK have different rates systems, these proposed changes should mean variation in business rates throughout the UK will be less dramatic at each revaluation and should prove more responsive to economic changes. In short, it should mean that we will not see as many huge increases in value that were witnessed throughout the UK at the 2017 Revaluation, causing significant cashflow issues for businesses until appeals can be heard.
The Chancellor also confirmed that despite being considered ahead of the Autumn Budget, the Government will not be opting for a self-assessment style system for business rates in England & Wales.
According to Helen Dickinson, chief executive of the British Retail Consortium, “more frequent revaluations were a ‘step in the right direction’ but that the Valuation Office Agency and ratepayers would need to work together to ensure the system runs smoothly”.
One immediate area of concern as a result of this is that Government has stated that any changes must be ‘revenue neutral’. However, clearly there will be increased costs in undertaking revaluations more frequently. The concern is those extra costs will ultimately be incurred by the ratepayer.
The full article can be read here:
Please do contact our team to discuss how these proposed changes might affect your business.