HARRIS LAMB’S RATING TEAM WELCOMES EXTENDED SUPPORT FOR HOSPITALITY, LEISURE AND RETAIL SECTOR ANNOUNCED IN AUTUMN STATEMENT 22
Business Rates specialists at Harris Lamb have welcomed the Autumn Statement unveiled by Chancellor Jeremy Hunt today.
The much-anticipated announcement today has outlined a raft of plans aimed at helping ratepayers, with particular support being aimed at the much-beleaguered hospitality, leisure and retail sector.
Key takeaways include a freeze on the business rates multiplier for a further year, increased relief for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses and abolishing the downward transitional relief system to ensure those seeing lower bills as a result of the revaluation will benefit from the decrease straight away.
Andrew Hulbert, Director of Harris Lamb’s Business Rates team, said: “The Autumn Statement 2022 is one that everyone has had a vested interest in, and while we are right to have significant concerns about the economy, we are pleased to see that significant steps have been taken to support businesses.
‘The massive impact of Covid-19 on retail, hospitality and leisure businesses has immediately been followed by the crushing hikes in energy costs, seeing more pubs, restaurants and high street stores collapsing. Therefore, we are extremely relieved that the government has extended and increased the relief scheme for these businesses from 50 per cent to 75 per cent for the 2023-24 period, up to £110,000 per business.
“Effectively, this will mean that a typical small shop with a rateable value increasing from £20,000 in 2017 to £21,500 in 2023 will receive relief worth around £8,000, while a typical pub with a rateable value decreasing from £31,900 in 2017 to £27,600 in 2023 will be entitled to relief worth over £10,300 – both of which are subject to the £110,000 cash cap per business.
“All of this is positive news for the sector, but we have welcomed in particular the news that the downward transitional relief system has been abolished, something that we and many other rating professionals have been calling for for years,” he added.
The decision to remove the downward caps means that all businesses with declining rateable values as a result of the forthcoming 2023 revaluation will benefit immediately, making a significant difference for the 300,000 businesses affected by the transition system.
Andrew added: “In a bid to protect businesses from rising inflation, the government has frozen the business rates multiplier for another year, ensuring that bills are six per cent lower than they would be without the freeze.
“The planned 2023 revaluation will now go ahead as planned on April 1st, based on property values from April 1st 2021. To help ratepayers adapt to their new rateable values, Mr Hunt also announced a new three-year Exchequer funded upward Transitional Relief scheme worth £1.6 billion, which aims to keep bills manageable for around 700,000 properties from April 2023 through capping their increases,” he said.
The government is limiting bill increases to five per cent next year for around 500,000 small properties as well as providing more generous support for large businesses than under the 2017 scheme, meaning that only nine per cent of properties in England will see bill increases greater than 15per cent in 2023-24.
The full extent of business rates support prepared by the government can be read here.