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Business Rates – When Less is More

Business Rates – When Less is More

Less rates? That would certainly mean more cashflow for your business.  Business rates are often seen as a necessary evil, a fixed amount of money that leaves your business once a month. Wouldn’t that money be put to better use by it staying in your pocket?

If you were able to significantly reduce the amount you pay in rates, how would you use it?

With the help of a qualified, experienced professional, the amount of business rates that you pay can in many cases be reduced, in line with your property’s hypothetical rental value from 2008 – the basis adopted by the Valuation Office.

In addition, partially due to the current rateable value being so historic and to encourage business growth, there are also a number of reliefs available to benefit ratepayers, many of which are opt-in, including Retail Relief and Small Business Rates relief plus for example it is worth considering the benefits of being within an Enterprise Zone.

The subject of business rates requires expert knowledge.

So many businesses are still not taking advantage of the opportunity to reduce their rateable value, so Property Aspects Magazine asked rating professional Paul Giness of The Beattie Partnership, why this might be.

Paul commented: “Business rates are something of an esoteric subject, an area rife with complicated, technical jargon a complicated process for the uninitiated”.

Paul continued: “People don’t usually appeal their own rating costs because they simply don’t have the knowledge. A lot of work goes on behind the scenes when reviewing the rateable value, in terms of understanding the stages involved to navigate through the appeal process”.

“It is also important to consider which strategy to adopt with the relevant authorities to obtain the best likelihood of getting a saving. It involves looking at cases from a different perspective, identifying a unique angle and then shaping the approach to the Valuation Office”.

“This can produce great results, for example, we managed to remove the majority of a school’s liability due to the level repairs and maintenance required. We’ve also reduced an assessment as part of the on-site plant was not fully functioning which effectively meant the site wasn’t at full capacity”.

“You’d be surprised what can create the seed of a rating case”.

Many people however, don’t actually realise that the amount they’re paying could be reduced.”

Qualified ratings professionals take into account the specific site areas and use of your property and consider comparable properties and rental evidence in the vicinity and seek to reduce business rates liabilities throughout each revaluation period – currently 2010 to 2017. This can sometimes have a significant effect on their rates bills.

With an expert employed on your rates reduction project, that could mean less money going to the local authority, which could mean more for your business!

For more details please visit The Beattie Partnership website: