The government has announced 1 April 2015 as the valuation date for business rates assessments for 2017 onwards.

Rates are currently calculated on 2008 levels and revaluation usually takes place every five years, but in 2012 the government moved the date from 2013 to 2015, a move generally criticised by the property community.

The business community is now expected to welcome the announcement of a definite date even though it is still delayed.

“Having been critical of the postponement by two years of the 2015 revaluation, business will welcome this tangible commitment from the government to finally bring rates bills more into line with current economic realities,” commented Jerry Schurder, head of business rates at Gerald Eve.

“The business rates burden will be more fairly split from 2017 onwards and struggling Rochdale retailers will no longer be subsidising the luxury brands of Regent Street.”

However, he criticised the continued two year gap between valuation date and the issuing of updated business rates bills.

“The whole point of a revaluation is to ensure rates bills reflect the property rental market and the wider economic climate – a gap of two years between valuation and implementation only reduces the chances that the bills will represent businesses’ ability to pay,” he said.

“The overwhelming business response to the government’s ongoing review of business rates administration was that the gap should be shortened to one year and revaluations should occur more frequently.”