Permanent Small Business Rate Relief scheme for Wales

13 December 2017

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The Welsh Government has announced that a permanent Small Business Rate Relief scheme (SBRR) will be introduced from 1st April 2018. The current limits will remain the same: occupied properties up to £6,000 RV will continue to receive 100% relief from business rates, tapered up to £12,000 RV i.e. occupied property with an assessment of £9,000 RV will enjoy 50% relief.

Currently all businesses meeting these thresholds enjoy the relief.  However, the new scheme will limit the relief to two properties per business in each local authority area.. 

Maintaining the existing thresholds and applying this restriction will give a reduction in SBRR of £7M which will be targeted at other areas of relief:-

  • Increased support for the childcare sector increasing the upper threshold for rate relief from £12,000 RV to £20,500 RV.
  • £5M of support to continue the temporary High Street Rates Relief scheme into 2018/2019.
  • An additional £1.3M funding to local authorities, for them to use their discretionary powers to provide targeted relief to support local businesses which would benefit most from additional assistance..
  • Targeted support for small hydro-power projects.

This continues the Welsh Government’s theme of targeting specific sectors of the Welsh economy.

One concern would be if publicity focuses on the higher thresholds in England: full SBRR up to £12,000 RV tapering up to £15,000 RV. However, any headline comparison could be construed as unfair due to the differing property value profile in England and the wider linking of business premises restricting the application of the relief.

The Leekes Retail and Leisure Group have substantial property assets within the group and have engaged Andrew West to appeal against rating assessments on these properties since 2010. We have consistently been impressed by Andrew's knowledge of the property market and his negotiating skills have been exceptional. Given Andrew's outstanding performance, we would not hesitate to recommend Andrew to any business large or small seeking to appeal their rates liabilities.

Mike Fowler, Group Finance Director, Leekes Group