New business rate bills will be issued on April 1 following a revaluation of just under two million non-domestic properties last year. The new tariffs are based on the rental value of properties on April 1 2015 and will be used to calculate business rate bills from April 1 this year.
Owners of business premises can check their details on the Valuation Office Agency website. The VOA’s site also has a tool to allow business owners to estimate their rates bill for 2017-18.
Solicitors and property experts Howes Percival say average bills should increase by 10.6%, but add that the increase will largely be felt by owners of premises in London and the South East, where property values have soared.
Howes Percival solicitor and property expert Jamie Childs said: "If a business thinks that factual errors may have been made about their property, it should contact the VOA to discuss this informally as soon as possible."
Howes Percival says a property in Mayfair, central London, could see an increase in rateable value of 415%, while properties in Lowestoft in Norfolk, could experience a decrease of 41%.
The government’s own figures estimate decreases of 3% and 6% for business rate bills in the East Midlands and the East respectively but predict an 11% increase in bills in London.
The government is considering putting in place a transitional scheme for businesses facing large increases that will put a cap on payments, however the scheme means those expecting a significant drop in business rates will not benefit for a number of years.