Business rates across Northampton are set to rise by a total of up to £3,457,589 next April, a rent and rates specialist has claimed.
A spokesman for specialist firm, CVS, said the Government had adjusted the Rateable Values of every business property in England and Wales to reflect changes in the property market. The new Rateable Value will be used to determine the basis of the tax calculation for rates next April.
"The revaluation of business properties usually happens every five years but was controversially delayed by two years as a result of the economic downturn," he said.
"The last revaluation came into effect on April 1, 2010 based on the property market as long ago as April 1, 2008," he added.
However, new Rateable Values recently published show that across Northampton, total Rateable Values have increased by a sizeable £196,254.
Their analysis shows Northampton’s 20,068 businesses had a combined Rateable Value of £671,868,649 based on the last property assessment in 2010, which has formed the basis of rates bills for the last seven years, but this has just increased to£672,064,903.
As a result, CVS project that next year this will add an additional £3,457,589 in tax to Northampton’s overall rates bill which is likely to rise to a huge £335,988,790 on average over the 2017 List.
The Government is currently consulting on a scheme called 'transitional relief' that will phase in large increases in rate bills to cushion the blow.
Mark Rigby, CEO of CVS said: "There’s no doubt that the new Rating List isn’t the best bit of news for businesses in Northampton.
“The previous business rates assessments took effect just as the financial crisis turned the property market on its head. That meant that over the last seven years, businesses here have effectively been paying less than what they perhaps should have been.
“However, the Government’s proposals for transitional rates relief mean that those businesses expecting higher bills should be cushioned by the blow, and the increase in rates payable will be gradually phased in.”
Businesses facing increased rates bills are advised to seek professional advice as to whether they are paying the correct amount. The Government’s changes to the business rates appeals process means that there is now a three-stage process known as ‘Check. Challenge. Appeal.’ (CCA) for the property’s new assessment.
The CCA process is intended to manage the flow of cases through the system in a structured and transparent way, and each step must be fully completed in sequence to submit an Appeal.
Nearly three-quarter of a million businesses in England and Wales challenged their last assessment with almost one in three receiving a rebate.