Business Rates

The 2010 Rating List is based on the Valuation Office Agency’s opinion of rental values prevailing at or around 1 April 2008.

The downturn in values a result of the recession and the change in legislation surrounding charging rates on empty premises, has meant that occupiers budgets for Business Rates have increased.

As active agents in the commercial property market across the South West, we use evidence compiled from lettings across all sectors of the market to enable us to advise clients as to whether appeals are likely to be successful.

David Hart, Rating Director comments “The rating revaluation which is carried out periodically by the government, will come into effect on 1st April 2017. Draft rateable values will be made available to ratepayers in advance of this date, so business should be able to start budgeting for changes. This is therefore still an opportunity to appeal the rateable value of a property until 31st March 2017, and ratepayers who are interested in doing so should take advise as soon as possible. Not only will successful appeal reduce liability leading up to April 2017. We provide advice mainly on a ‘no win no fee’ basis and will be pleased to carry out a study of your property to determine the possibility of making savings”.

Our Service

We are approachable and will provide you with honest, concise advice which will be aimed at saving as much money as possible on your behalf.

The general process

When you contact us we will:

1)      Discuss the general aspects of the property with you to ascertain whether there may be scope to mitigate rates liability including
entitlement to any current reliefs

2)      Carry out a desk top study of the detailed rating valuation for your property

3)      If we believe there is scope to successfully appeal the assessment, arrange an appointment to carry out a detailed on site

4)      Provide a reasoned recommendation of the likely outcome if an appeal were to be submitted, with an indication of possible

5)      On agreeing our fees we will submit the appeal

6)      On receipt of a target settlement date from the Valuation Office Agenecy we will conduct negotiations through to settlement

In addition

Preparing for, and appearing at, Valuation Tribunals in the case of unresolved appeals.

Reporting on savings in rates payable following settlement of appeal.

Completing Request for Information forms.


Our fees are normally charged on a success related basis being a percentage of savings in one year out a potential seven years of savings if the property has been occupied since 1st April 2010. Fees are payable following receipt of refunded rates in most cases.

There are however circumstances where a time charge will be made, either for for appearing at a Valuation Tribunal if an appeal cannot be settled by negotiation, or for ongpoing advice in a complicated property matter.

Some general information on rate relief

Various reliefs from full rate liability are available, including Discretionary part void relief. We have negotiated this on all kinds of property from the phased withdrawal of a large production facility from a town centre site, to a retail shop which was loosely split into two parts, one of which remained vacant.

In certain circumstances it may be possible to obtain relief on property which is not capable of being used for it’s original purpose.

Currently, unoccupied property is entitled to a 3 months rates free period after becoming vacant, extended to 6 months for industrial property. From 1 October 2013 all newly build commercial property became exempt from empty property rates liability for up to 18 months (up to EU state aid limits) from date of completion.

Small Business Rate Relief

50% relief is available to businesses with an RV under £6,000, declining on a sliding scale to 0% at £12,000 RV. (After April 2017 all business with an RV below £12,000 will receive 100% relief, and those from £12,000 RV to £15,000 will be granted relief on a sliding scale).

Businesses occupying more than one property are eligible for relief only if the main property has an RV under £12,000, all their other properties have RVs under £2,600, and the aggregate of all properties is under £18,000 RV (£25,500 in London). Relief will, however, only apply to the main property.

Owners or tenants of unoccupied properties with an RV under £2,600 will be entitled to 100% relief.


PlymouthDavid Hart FRICS & Philip Dickins MRICS
Tel: 01752 670700

TruroTom Neville MRICS
Tel: 01872 261028

ExeterMike Lloyd MRICS
Tel: 01392 202203