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Business rates and relief

The next business rates revaluation is on 1 April 2017, the first time for seven years.

Rates are one of the most disliked taxes because they are not linked to the performance of the business in terms of sales, profit or number of employees but the market value of the property they occupy.

According to the government, 920,000 businesses will pay the same, 420,000 will pay less but 510,000 will pay more. Some of these businesses may have to pay before extra before knowing if they can access the £300m relief fund announced in the March 2017 budget.

Businesses pay rates that reflect the changes in their local property market. Businesses using one property with a rateable value of £12,000 and below will receive 100% small business rate relief. Properties with a rateable value between £12,000 and £15,000 get tapered relief.

It may take many months before the rules for the relief fund are clear. Even then, local councils will have to create rules and guidelines, billing and an application processes.

However, no businesses coming out of small business rate relief will see their bills increase by more than £600 in 2017/18.  And, any increases to bills will be capped at £50 a month or at the transitional relief cap.

Image from Flickr by Bazza Darambler.

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