Whilst the Autumn Statement was good news for small retailers with the extension of the 75% discount and the freezing of the small business rates multiplier, the commercial real estate intelligence firm Altus Group, say that 43,160 ‘large’ retail premises in England, those with a rateable value above £51,000, will now face a 6.7% inflationary increase in their bills next April to the tune of £308.96 million for 2024/25.
The 6.7% increase is the biggest year-on-year increase to the standard business rates multiplier since 1991. The news comes as the UK’s annual inflation rate fell sharply to 4.6% in October on the back of cheaper gas and electricity, its lowest level for two years.
The increases are eye watering for those stores with the highest rateable value, an estimate of the open market rental value on 1st April 2021, based on an estimate by the Valuation Office Agency (VOA).
Alex Probyn, President of Property Tax at Altus Group, accused the Chancellor of “giving with one hand and taking with another” saying “increasing business rates next April, at the highest rate in 32 years, could be clawed back through full expensing but only if companies choose to invest.
“But our clients already tell us that business rates are a disincentive to invest and an effective tax rate of 54.6% will do not thing to dispel that.”