Propertymark campaign leads to business rates relief

After a campaign led by Propertymark, the Government have confirmed that business rates relief has been extended to estate and letting agents. This means those agency offices that have closed as a result of Covid-19 measures to restrict the spread of the virus will be now be exempted from business rates in 2020–2021.

Propertymark lobbied MHCLG, MPs and Peers as well as writing to The Chancellor, Business Secretary and Housing Minister last week to urge the relief to be extended to property agent offices. Propertymark members were also part of the campaign with many writing to their local MPs demanding action.

Eligible businesses will be rebilled by their local authority and the new bill will give them a discount of 100 per cent. If businesses have made payments in the meantime, they will be refunded by their local authority.

The Government advise that if any business has a query regarding their bill, they should get in touch with their local authority. Furthermore, guidance for local authorities on the application of the holiday will be published by MHCLG shortly.

The Devolved Administrations will receive funding under the Barnett formula to support businesses in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Today, I am removing some the exclusions for this relief, so that retail, leisure, and hospitality properties that have closed as a result of the measures announced by the Prime Minister in his statement on Monday will now be eligible for the relief. This will ensure that estate agents, lettings agencies and bingo halls that are required to close will not pay any business rates next year. 

Rishi Sunak Chancellor of the Exchequer.

We are pleased to see that the Government has listened and acknowledged the concerns from many estate and letting agencies across the country, that resulted in requests to three Secretaries of State last week for the business rates relief to be extended to estate and letting agents. This is a real boost in uncertain times and will assist all businesses that are finding it difficult to operate in the current environment.

Mark Hayward Chief Executive | NAEA Propertymark

Propertymark is continuing to work with all Governments across the UK to ensure that members are supported wherever they are operating.