September 2019 inflation figures published

The September 2019 Consumer Prices Index (CPI) figure has been announced and shows a 1.78% increase over the previous year. This sets the upper limit by which next year's Uniform Business Rate (UBR) multiplier is expected to increase in England and Wales. ...Read More

Property guardians’ occupation held domestic

The Upper Tribunal (Lands Chamber) has given an important judgement in respect of the effect of installing “property guardians” in a vacant office property. The Tribunal found that the guardians were in occupation of the rooms allocated to them, which were used as living accommodation. Because of this, the building could not be treated as a single non-domestic hereditament for rating purposes, as the Valuation Officer had sought to do. ...Read More

Alteration to assessment following end of temporary use

The Upper Tribunal has determined that a former wedding venue, part of which was let out on a temporary basis, should revert to its former rating assessment and description once the temporary use had ceased. The decision in Arnold v Dearing (VO) found that the Valuation Tribunal had been wrong to refuse to alter the assessment to reflect the letting of part of the property, but that the assessment should then revert to its former level following the end of that letting. ...Read More

Stables and arena “appurtenant” to house

Whilst business properties are subject to non-domestic rates, domestic properties are subject to Council Tax. The definition of domestic property includes living accommodation, together with any property that is “appurtenant to” that living accommodation. The Upper Tribunal (Lands Chamber) has considered what is meant by “appurtenant to” in its decision in Corkish (VO) v Bigwood. ...Read More

Office assessment reduced for disturbance

The rating assessment of offices in Berwick Street, London W1, was reduced by the Upper Tribunal (Lands Chamber) on appeal. The decision in HostSoho Limited v Jackson (VO) provides a useful reminder to valuers that valuation for rating, particularly in unusual circumstances, requires the application of common sense, and is not a formula-based process. ...Read More