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Bira weighs in on rating revaluation

Published: 3 October 2016

The British Independent Retailers Association (bira) has revealed its thoughts on the new Rating List and what it will mean for independent retailers in the UK.

The list will reveal winners and losers, "broadly a northern gain and a southern loss," according to Bira, with "a harder and more complicated appeals process, preparing for receipt of 2017 rates bills will be difficult."

For businesses who face an increase in the bills, any rise will be capped at 5% in the first year for small properties, with a dedicated system of transitional relief worth £3.4bn to help business owners adjust to the new bills.

According to bira, "the need for more frequent revaluations, which will happen in the future, will do nothing to help the suddenness of a change from previous 2008 based figures. The rateable value poundage, or multiplier, is expected to be set at its highest ever level, near 50p. This is a long way from the 35p back in 1990."

Said bira ceo Alan Hawkins: "Whilst bira wishes those members with a substantially reduced rates bill well, it will do nothing to reduce the fears and pressures on those at the other end of the scale.

"The government missed a trick in only helping businesses with a rateable value below £12,000 in its last budget. This has been too low to be of use to the majority of bira members.  In their current form, rates are unsustainable and will continue to pressurise survival on the high street."

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