Businesses and organisations in Fitzrovia should check their draft rateable value before the end of November to prevent getting an incorrect bill next year.
“It is important to check that the information the VOA use to calculate the rateable value of your property is correct, otherwise you may be paying more than you need to,” says Camden Council in an email sent to businesses and organisations in the borough.
“Checking the draft rateable value now could mean errors will be addressed before 1 April 2017, whereas a business rates appeal process can take a number of months,” says Camden.
Councils have no power to change rateable values or the multiplier. “We currently retain about 17% of the business rates we collect, but the rest goes to central government and the Greater London Authority,” says Camden.
Councillor Theo Blackwell, the cabinet member for finance, says:
“Camden has had a 29.52 per cent increase, one of the highest in the country. Some business will be impacted more than others. Looking at the draft figures Camden has calculated, and applying assumptions around the multiplier and relief arrangements, 1.4 per cent businesses in the borough are predicted to see an increase above 50 per cent. Over half of businesses will see a rateable value increase of up to 20 per cent and one-in-10 between 20 and 50 per cent (these will be eligible for transitional relief).
“Approximately 17 per cent will see a rateable value reduction,” said Blackwell in a letter to the Camden New Journal.
Rates in neighbouring Westminster are also being hit with increases. Some shops in Eastcastle Street could end up paying double their current bill.
According to Westminster Council’s Business Handbook it collects around £1.8 billion in business rates every year from its 35,000 non-domestic properties. However, “the council currently only retains a small proportion of this sum: around £77 million, or 4% of what the council collects.”
Rate payers should go online to check their draft rateable value before 30 November 2016 on the Government’s website tax.service.gov.uk/view-my-valuation/search.