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The General Rates bill payable, to the Local Authority, and then passed on to the Government, is one of the most significant and painful overheads associated with property for owner or occupier alike. Occupied or empty, property rates can be payable, and the amount you pay will relate to the Assessment made by the District Valuer of the Government's Valuation Office Agency of the rateable value of the property.

It is most often an assessment made of the property interest (known as the heraditament)based upon the hypothetical rental of the property, let year to year, as it is,  but at a given date. There are some properties that are assessed differently. All are issued on a List and the List is revalued and reviewed every 5 years.

The assessments are supposed to be fair and relate to "the tone of the list". The assessments are to take account of assessments of similar properties nearby and in the whole of the market place. The List issued in 1973 not reviewed for many years. Eventually  the properties in the List were re-valued and new Lists issued in 1990,1995, and 2000, based on rental values 2 years earlier.

Because of the very large increases and decreases the Government introduced phasing of increases and decreases and this "transitional relief" has continued since, distancing the value assessment and the rates that should be payable from that actually payable. This is done by complex adjustments based on percentage increases and decreases of the amounts payable based on regulations and the rate of inflation, and to some extent the location and value of the property.

We can inspect your property and advise whether the Assessment appears reasonable and correct or should be appealed. Grounds for Appeals are limited but for the year 2005 List can include such matters as:

  • Incorrect assessment of the assumed 2003 rental or tone of the list
  • Incorrect measurement of the property for rating measurement
  • Incorrect assessment of plant and equipment
  • Changes to the property
  • Environmental changes, e.g. road closures, new shopping centre

We can appeal your assessment and advise as to the appropriate settlement by agreement, or by appearance at the Local Valuation Court, or if necessary to the Lands Tribunal.

Please contact us at: surveyors@alanwipperman.co.uk

Please note appeals cannot always be back-dated to the start of the List or to the event that gave rise to a change in circumstances.

More information is available on the Valuation Agency web site and you can look up your rateable value on line at the Government's Valuation Office Agency website which advises on how to appeal at:

http://www.voa.gov.uk

Where transitional relief applies you can check your Council's calculations by referring to NNDR poundage, RPI Factors and Appropriate Fractions and rates of interest for back payments. For England these are (Scotland and Wales are different):