As we move through Revaluation 2023, the window of opportunity for Scottish businesses to evaluate and potentially submit a proposal against the initial business rates assessment ended on 31 August 2023.
Now, there will only be limited opportunities to appeal – for instance, where there is a new occupation or a Material Change of Circumstance (MCC), but these must be made within four months of the occupation or change.
Business rates, which are taxes paid by firms that use non-domestic assets, significantly impact financial outlays and planning. The Scottish Assessors Association (SAA) sets business rates using the property’s Rateable Value, which is based on rental value at a given date. While conceptually simple, this system frequently causes controversy, prompting businesses to consider challenging their business rates.
While the appeals process is important, it can be complicated and time-consuming. To address this, businesses must follow a step-by-step process that includes checking the Rateable Value, gathering supporting evidence such as rates of similar local properties or significant changes affecting property value, and filling out a detailed appeal form on the Scottish Government’s website.
Though this process may appear onerous, it has the potential to save businesses significant sums of money, especially if present values are considered excessive. However, industry experience shows that not every company has the time, finances, or depth of data to navigate an appeal successfully.
Our goal as business rate experts goes beyond just outlining the challenges. We seek to foster dialogue, offer insights, and provide specialised guidance for businesses dealing with these concerns. In these difficult times, we help businesses make educated decisions within Scotland’s changing business rates landscape.