HMG has confirmed that the next business rating revaluation in England will be postponed until april 2023, and based on values at 1st april 2021.
The new revaluation date means that business rates will be assessed on rental values that better reflect the impact of the pandemic.
The downside of this delay is that business rate billing will continue to be based on the now historic 2015 valuation until april 2023.
HMG has also invited evidence on reforming the business rating system, with a full response to the many issues required in two phases: by 18th september and 31st october 2020. The review is expected to conclude in spring 2021.
Most retail, leisure and hospitality occupiers are currently receiving 100% Retail Rate Relief as part of HMG support measures for the economy; however, it is not known what relief, if any, will be available from april 2021.
I have recently completed the check and challenge business rating procedure with the Valuation Office Agency on behalf of a local hostelry. The system is complex, with the valuation based on fair maintainable turnover taken as an average over 3 years trading income. There is nothing fair about this valuation methodology which penalises pubs and restaurants for increasing their turnover without any allowances for overheads and profitability. I engaged with VOA over 9 months and was able to obtain a token reduction that will be backdated to april 2017. Having been invited to submit their own specialist evidence, I hope that the Trade bodies that represent the leisure and hospitality industry will make the strongest representations to HMG to reform the basis of rating valuation in this sector.