Business Rates Reduction FAQs

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The Rateable Value of a property is the open market rental value at the Antecedent Valuation Date (AVD). The AVD fixes the date at which the rental value is assessed which is two years before each Rating List comes into force. The most recent Revaluation became effective from 1st April 2010. As a result, Rateable Values for the April 2010 List are based on rental levels and market conditions on 1st April 2008.

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There are two main factors: the Rateable Value of the property and the annual level of the Uniform Business Rate (UBR) also known as the business rates multiplier. Business rates are worked out by multiplying the ‘Rateable Value’ of your property (set by the Valuation Office Agency) by the business rates multiplier.

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The Uniform Business Rate (UBR) is the multiplier that is applied to the Rateable Value to calculate the rates payable. Each year, except in the year of a rating Revaluation, the UBR increases in line with inflation. The current UBR is £0.482 in England. If you occupy premises in England with a 2010 Rateable Value of £40,000, you calculate your business rates liability subject to any relief as follows:

£40,000 x £0.48 = Rates Payable of £19,200

It is worth checking your rates bill for any errors to ensure that you paying the correct amount.

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You will receive a business rates bill from your local council, usually in February or March. This bill is for the tax year ahead.

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Most business premises are assessed for rates and have a Rateable Value. Living accommodation is generally treated as domestic property and is subject to the council tax instead. Apart from living accommodation, there are several types of property that are exempt from business rates, including agricultural land and most churches.
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Generally speaking the answer is yes, however there are some concessions. In England and Wales there is no liability for rates for the first three months a property is vacant, or for the first six months for industrial and warehouse properties. After that, rates are payable at the full occupied rate.

Your local Billing Authority has discretionary powers to grant relief where a property is temporarily only partly occupied. If relief is granted, the Rateable Value will be apportioned by the Valuation Officer and full rates will be payable on the part that is occupied, and empty rates will apply to the unoccupied parts of the property.

Please click here to find out how CVS can help you benefit from Empty Rates Relief.

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City Supplements are a levy on business rates in order to fund particular local projects that contribute to the economic development or regeneration of an area. These are called BID Schemes (Business Improvement Districts) which, if successful, run for five years. There are over 60 BIDs already established in the UK with more planned in the future. Examples include additional terrorism cover and funding of the Olympics 2012. We can advise Clients on the financial impact of existing BIDs or proposed schemes.