From 1 April 2023, business rates in England and Wales will be updated to reflect changes in property values since the last revaluation in 2017. Although many businesses will see increased bills, others will see reductions. A package of targeted support will help with the transition.
The revaluation is based on April 2021 rental values, a time when the property market was seeing significant turbulence. Not surprisingly, there will be considerable fluctuation between areas. For example, in London, the estimated change in rates bills payable across sub-markets range from a decrease of 11% in Victoria, to an increase of 34% in Clerkenwell and Farringdon.
The changes target the ‘bricks vs. clicks’ tax imbalance between physical and online businesses by substantially raising the business rates bills for big warehouse operators, but limiting rises for many high street retailers, restaurants and pubs.
Business support package
A support package has been announced to help business rate payers affected by the revaluation.
· Business rates multipliers will be frozen for a further year, keeping them at 49.9p (small business) and 51.2p (standard) for 2023/24.
· For 2023/24, retail, hospitality and leisure properties not qualifying for small business rates relief will receive a 75% business rates discount, subject to a cash cap of £110,000 per business. Relief is only 50% for the current year.
· The downwards transitional relief caps will be abolished so that a business with a decreased rates valuation for 2023/24 immediately benefits from the full reduction on their bills.
· For businesses with higher rates bills for 2023/24 as a result of the revaluation, upwards transition caps will limit the increase – these are set at 5%, 15% and 30% for small, medium and large premises respectively.
· There will be protection for small businesses who lose eligibility (or see reductions) for either small business or rural rate relief due to the updated valuations. Bill increases will
be capped at £600 for 2023/24.
The government’s business rates valuation service, which shows a business’s updated rateable value for 2023/24, can be found here. Any revisions for Scottish businesses are expected in the Scottish Budget on 15 December.