Budget 2020 analysis: Business rates

In the aftermath of Budget 2020, MHA Moore and Smalley tax specialists provide an analysis of the announcements made by Chancellor Rishi Sunak in his first budget. In this blog we review the changes to business rates.

Measures to minimise the impact of the COVID-19 virus dominated the 2020 budget. One of these measures was to increase the business rates retail discount from already announced 50% to 100% for a period of one year from 1 April 2020.

This effective ‘tax holiday’ will help small business with the properties with a rateable value of less than £51,000. The discount will be extended not only to music venues and cinemas, as previously announced, but also to all hospitality and leisure businesses including museums, art galleries and theatres, caravan parks and gyms, small hotels and B& Bs, sports clubs, nightclubs, club houses and guest houses.

In addition pubs, called by the chancellor ‘the heart of the community’, will benefit from a £5,000 discount in business rates if their rateable value is below £100,000. This in an increase from the £1,000 discount already announced.

Further changes concerned business rates for local newspapers with office space discount of £1,500 being extended for an additional 5 years until 31 March 2025.

The Government is also launching a fundamental review of business rates to report in the Autumn.

For any further advice on the Budget 2020 announcement, please contact a member of our tax team.