How can I get my rateable value reduced?
The rateable value is assessed by the Valuation Office Agency (VOA). You should contact the VOA if you wish to appeal however, please note, that your rates still need to be paid in accordance with the bill while any appeal is being pursued.
The Valuation Office Agency will normally re-value all business properties every five years. They do this to ensure that individual rateable values reflect the changes that have taken place in the property market since the last revaluation. From April 2017, all business rates bills have a new rateable value. These were assessed in relation to April 2015 values. A summary which explains how the valuation has been worked out is available from the Valuation Office Agency.
Check, Challenge, Appeal
There is a new business rates appeal process in England from 1 April 2017 known as check, challenge, appeal. The Valuation Office Agency (VOA) deals with checks and challenges, while the independent Valuation Tribunal for England handles appeals.
Employing a Rating Surveyor
The council are aware that some businesses have had problems where they have employed a rating surveyor or adviser. The Department of Communities and Local Government have offered the following advice.
If you are considering making an appeal to change your rateable value you may wish to contact a rating adviser. Members of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) and Institute of Revenues Rating and Valuation (IRRV) are regulated by rules of professional conduct designed to protect the public from misconduct. You can find details of these organisations and their members on their websites.
Before employing a rating adviser, and particularly before employing one who is not a member of one of these bodies, you should satisfy yourself that he or she has the necessary knowledge and expertise, as well as appropriate indemnity insurance.
You should also be wary of false or misleading claims.
We are aware of agents who do not explain, for example, that a reduction in rateable value may not necessarily lead to a reduction in the amount of rates you will have to pay. This is because there are overriding limits on how much rates bills can change from year to year under the transitional relief scheme.
Please be careful before entering into any contract and take advice if necessary before you do so. Also bear in mind that no matter how persuasive they may be, no one can guarantee reductions in rateable value. These are always subject to the agreement of the valuation officer, or the decision of a valuation tribunal or higher court.