Treasury seeks feedback on business rates revaluations

Business rates revaluations in England could take place every three years, following the launch of a recent consultation. 

The latest consultation forms part of a comprehensive review into business rates in England, with a report due to be published in the autumn. 

Business rates are similar to council tax for business properties in England. They are paid by businesses, or landlords if a property is empty.

How much they pay is based on open-market rental values which are determined by the Valuation Office Agency every five years.

These revaluations result in new rateable values being given to all business properties in England, and revisions to the two business rates multipliers. 

The last revaluation was in 2017, based on rents in 2015. The next one is due in 2022, subject to the outcome of the autumn report. 

The Government is consulting on making business rate revaluations every three years, “ensuring they better reflect changing economic conditions”.

Jesse Norman, Financial Secretary to the Treasury, said:

“Proposals set out in this consultation would mean that valuations more quickly reflect how the economy is performing.

“This would make the business rates system [in England] more accurate and responsive, while balancing the burden for ratepayers.”

The consultation has been well received by business groups, including the British Retail Consortium which has called for more frequent revaluations. 

Helen Dickinson, chief executive at the BRC, said:

“This should be the first step towards making the business rates system [in England] fairer and more reflective of current economic conditions. 

“As retail emerges from the pandemic, a return to ‘business rates-as-usual’ could derail the industry’s recovery, with unnecessary shop closures and job losses the result. 

“It is vital the Government builds on this road to reform and stands by its commitment to reduce the overall rates burden on businesses, while ensuring there are no further delays to the outcome of the fundamental review.”

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