Autumn Statement affecting Rates
The Chancellor has gone some way to acknowledging that EPR is seriously damaging the commercial property and construction sectors throughout the recession.
The only glimmer of light in the Autumn Statement however has been an extended Rate-free period for all new development. All newly built property completed between 01 October 2013 and 30 September 2016 will benefit from a Rate-free period of up to 18 months or occupation of the building, whichever comes sooner.
The industry asked “Why new build only?” The Chancellor seemingly decided that major refurbishment work of premises stopping short of total redevelopment, will not benefit from this relaxation. The property industry had been lobbying for extended periods of Rate-free charges (up to 6 months for offices and shops and full exemption for industrial property) and a raising of the Base Rate for 100% Rate relief from rateable value of £2600 to rateable value of £18,000. Regrettably the Chancellor has not acceded to either of these suggestons.