Peterborough firms are forecast to enjoy “windfall” in business rates review

Businesses in Peterborough may enjoy a "financial windfalll" in the current review of business rates.
Businesses in Peterborough may enjoy a "financial windfalll" in the current review of business rates.

Most businesses in Peterborough are expected to enjoy a financial windfall in the wake of a national shake-up of ratable values, it has been claimed.

Experts say the national rates revaluation that is being carried out by the government will mean a shift in the burden of business rates to London and the South East.

Richard Jones, of Barker Storey Matthews.

Richard Jones, of Barker Storey Matthews.

As a result it is estimated most companies in Peterborough will be better off by between £3,000 to £6,000 a year.

Richard Jones, director at commercial agents Barker Storey Matthews, said: “The huge growth in rental values in London and the South East since the last rating revaluation in 2008 has meant a shift in the business rates burden.

“The majority of Peterborough businesses look to be in a position to gain from this valuation.

“Windfall bonuses are expected for many Peterborough businesses.”

Rateable value of premises and the multiplier figure used to calculate the amount to be paid are set to fall.

Also, companies occupying just one building and are UK registered can apply for small business rates relief and will now pay no business rates from next April.

Mr Jones added: “This is a huge boost to small Peterborough businesses and a real encouragement for companies to strengthen and move.

“The best savings will be for office premises under 1,000sqft and industrial units under 2,000sqft.

“Many larger businesses, that can’t claim the small business relief, may also have some saving.

“The business rates revaluation weights values towards those areas of the UK that have experienced the highest rental growth.

“As the total of all the values generally throughout the UK has increased, the multiplier that applies to the buildings rateable value is also predicted to reduce.

“Peterborough companies will therefore have the double added benefit of not only reduced rateable values but also an overall reduced multiplier.

Mr Jones added: “Although Peterborough has been hugely successful in the last few years in attracting new companies, rents generally have not moved that greatly due to the huge amount of stock in the marketplace when the recession hit in 2008.

“This has helped to keep rents under control and hence led to a knock on added benefit of lower rateable values, to the benefit of scores of local businesses.”

But Mr Jones warned that as well as winners there will be losers.

He said: “Not all businesses will necessarily benefit from the change.

“There are some hotspots in Peterborough where rents have outgrown the general market and where occupiers may actually see increases in rateable values, although we expect these to be in the minority.”

Peterborough MP Stewart Jackson said: “With good jobs growth, more apprenticeships and low unemployment, it’s obvious that the city is attracting new businesses and relocations - a more competitive business rates will add an extra incentive for firms to seriously consider basing their businesses in Peterborough.”