Small businesses in Gloucestershire could be among the winners following last week’s Budget.
That’s according to Angus Taylor, Commercial Partner at Bruton Knowles, who believes the high concentrations of SMEs and startups across the county suggests there could be more winners than losers.
He said: “The Chancellor has thrown a bone to South West SMEs by slashing business rates. The threshold has more than doubled from £6,000 to a maximum of £15,000 rateable value before the tax is payable."
“For small businesses across the South West this will amount to a significant overhead saving. What’s more, he says the change is “permanent”, which means businesses no longer have to cross their fingers every year in the hope the concession will be extended."
“At the lower end of the market it will certainly help start-ups and SMES, with properties up to £100,000 not paying a penny, followed by two per cent for the next £150,000.”
But he said anything above £250,000 will be subject to a five per cent charge - which is a significant tax on larger commercial property transactions and could hit property investors of any scale.
“Larger businesses have been promised a simplification of the business rates system and, from 2020, a switch in the uprating from the higher RPI to the lower CPI. “
The Government is also applying a two per cent flat rate charge to new leases with a net present value above £5m.
Small businesses will also benefit from the business rate relief threshold raised from £6,000 rateable values to £15,000, while the higher rate relief will be increased from £18k to £51k.
“This will take small occupiers out of business rates altogether and a number above this threshold will also benefit from a reduced liability.”
There are also plans to accelerate devolution of this income direct to local councils, with London taking all of its income from rates after April next year.
There will be a new stamp duty regime for second and additional homes to help fund New Community Housing Trusts and an additional £115m for projects to support the homeless.
Angus Taylor concluded: “There is good news for small business and those making smaller transactions, but larger property investors will pay more.”