Download E-brochures

Our Services

Based in Edinburgh, our retail and business space teams have been immersed in their markets for over 30 years, gaining an in-depth understanding of owners’ and occupiers’ requirements.

These specialist teams provide expert advice on agency, rent review, rating, asset management, development and investment issues.

Our retail agency team is the largest in Scotland and currently active on 22 shopping centres and 15 retail parks; more than any other Scottish based practice. Our business space team provides bespoke advice on office property throughout Scotland.

Business Space

"We recognise that the best deal is not simply a function of rent and rent free but the one that best meets the goals of our client."

We provide landlords and tenants with bespoke advice on office properties across Scotland. We have advised numerous occupier clients on relocation and lease re-gears, first seeking to understand our client’s business so that we can offer property solutions which match the client’s goals and objectives. In doing so, we recognise that the best deal is not simply a function of rent and rent free but the one that best meets the goals of our client.

Our expertise in advising tenants has led to many landlord letting instructions from clients, who recognise that our track record in the occupier market greatly assists in converting viewings to concluded lettings.

On many occasions we work on a confidential basis with clients leading them through difficult property decisions and managing the transaction until legal completion.

Case Studies

Development Services

"We have developed a market leading reputation in the foodstore market."

Our development team has been established for over 20 years. Since inception we have successfully advised UK plc retail, leisure, residential and developer clients acquiring or disposing of around 5 million sq ft of space with a value of around £4 billion.

In addition to our activity in the retail warehouse, leisure and residential land sectors, we have developed a market leading reputation in the foodstore market, having been responsible for developing much of Tesco’s Scottish estate and advising on surplus land disposals and development/re-use opportunities.

We also currently advise landowners with strategic mixed use land suitable for development.

Case Studies

High Street Agency

"Our knowledge of Scotland’s high streets and retailer requirements is second to none."

Traditional high street retail agency is the foundation of our business. Our knowledge of Scotland’s high streets and retailer requirements is second to none and our retail and leisure teams are involved in a significant number of transactions each year throughout Scotland.

We act for a wide range of retail, leisure and landlord clients working with our Professional, Investment and Development teams, to deliver consistent, realistic and relevant advice. This allows our clients to adapt and react quickly in a dynamic, challenging and competitive market.

Case Studies

Investment

"We give clear, reasoned and pragmatic advice … leveraging Eric Young & Co’s in-depth retail and business space knowledge and contacts."

Our Investment team has circa 50 years combined partner level experience in the Scottish and UK investment markets. We give clear, reasoned, pragmatic advice to institutional, property company, and high net worth clients, leveraging Eric Young & Co’s in-depth retail and business space knowledge and contacts.

Our team has advised on numerous major acquisitions and disposals in the retail and business space sectors throughout the UK.

Case Studies

Professional Lease Advisory

"It is our belief that a forensic approach embedded in the reality of the market delivers the best results."

We have over 30 years of experience advising landlords and tenants on rent reviews and lease renewals in Scotland and England. It is our belief that a forensic approach embedded in the reality of the market delivers the best results. We are guided by a strong professional compass in all we do.

Our teams specialise in two distinct areas of in town/shopping centres and out of town/shopping parks.

In Town / Shopping Centres

We are retained to negotiate rent reviews and lease renewals in Scotland’s premier shopping centres including Braehead, St Enoch Centre (Glasgow) and Multrees Walk (Edinburgh). We also act for many landlords of prime high street retail and leisure property.

We act in an advisory capacity for Boots, Starbucks, Arcadia and Pret a Manger. We also have an in-depth knowledge of the restaurant market and have acted for a number of restaurant clients.

Out of Town / Shopping Parks / Foodstores

We are recognised experts in the out of town market acting throughout the UK. Our current instructions include notable schemes such as Fort Kinnaird (Edinburgh), Glasgow Fort, Hylton Retail Park (Sunderland), Springfield Retail Park (Elgin), Kittybrewster (Aberdeen) and Hindpool (Barrow in Furness).

Our retailer clients include UK-wide representation for B&Q, Wickes and Boots. In the food sector, we are retained advisors to Asda in Scotland and the North of England and act for Farmfoods throughout the UK.

Dispute Resolution

Where negotiations have failed, we have garnered significant experience in the dispute resolution process throughout the UK and Eric Young & Co is also represented on the RICS Panel of Arbitrators and Experts in Scotland.

Case Studies

Rating Consultancy

"It is our extensive market knowledge which enhances our ability to deliver the best appeal results for both landlords and tenants."

Rates payments are a significant property cost for both occupiers and landlords. To help address our clients’ concerns in relation to this ever increasing property tax, we offer general rates consultancy advice and where appropriate we pursue rates appeals on their behalf.

We represent the landlords of large shopping centres, major retailers, office occupiers and ratepayers in the leisure sector. Our clients include Primark, Arcadia, Farmfoods, Intu Braehead, Land Securities (Buchanan Galleries), Sovereign Centros (St Enoch), Orion (East Kilbride Shopping Centre), Hines (Almondvale Centre, Livingston), Scoop (Eastgate Centre, Inverness), Ellandi (Gyle Shopping Centre; Howgate Centre & Callendar Square, Falkirk; Paisley Centre; Trinity Centre, Aberdeen) and Capreon (Bon Accord & St Nicholas Centre, Aberdeen). These clients currently account for approximately £185m of rateable value.

Whether pursuing appeals or providing general advice we balance our understanding of the UK rating system with exhaustive investigations and market driven conclusions. We will achieve the best results either by negotiation, or through our pursuit of appeals via the court or tribunal process. It is our extensive market knowledge which enhances our ability to deliver the best appeal results for both landlords and tenants.

Eric Young & Co combine our rating expertise with the market knowledge gained from our agency and rent review involvement throughout the UK.
Our strengths include:
• Broad market knowledge, pro-active and innovative approach
• Technical understanding of the rating systems throughout the UK
• Non-domestic rates experience dating back to the 1990 Rates Revaluation
If you require advice on rates or require any assistance with the appeal process please contact our rating team.

Rate Poundage

Following the rates revaluation, the 2017 rate poundage in England, Scotland and Wales has been revised on the following basis:

ENGLAND – Rate £age 2018/19 
RV < £50,999 £0.480
RV > £51,000 (large property supplement of £0.013) £0.493
City of London Supplement £0.005
London Crossrail supplement – RV > £69,999 £0.020
Small Business Rates Relief (SBRR) may apply on a phased basis where RV <£15,000
Scotland
RV < £50,999 £0.480
RV > £51,000 (large property supplement of £0.026) £0.506
Small Business Bonus Scheme (SBBS) may apply on a phased basis where RV <£18,000
Wales
Rate poundage – all properties £0.514
Small Business Rates Relief (SBRR) may apply on a phased basis where RV <£15,000

Previous Rate Poundage Figures

2012-13 2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18
England
UBR 45.0 46.2 47.1 48.0 48.4 46.6
Large Property Supplement (>£18,000 or £25,500 if in London) 0.8 0.9 1.1 1.3 1.3 1.3
Total 45.8 47.1 48.2 49.3 49.7 47.9
Scotland
UBR 45.0 46.2 47.1 48.0 48.4 46.6
Large Property Supplement (>£35,000) 0.8 0.9 1.1 1.3 2.6 2.6
Total 45.8 46.2 48.2 49.3 51.0 49.2
Wales
UBR 45.2 46.4 47.3 48.2 48.6 49.9
Total 045.2 46.4 47.3 48.2 48.6 49.9

Rateable Values

Checking your values
It is possible to check the rateable values online through the Valuation Office and Assessors websites.

To find a value for properties in England and Wales it is helpful to use the postcode. If you do not know the postcode click here.

Useful Information

Introduction

Rates payments are a significant property cost for both occupiers and landlords.  The rateable values which determine the actual payments should be revised every five years, however following the deferral of the 2015 revaluation, rateable values have only recently been revised through the rates revaluation on 1 April 2017.  The previous revaluation was on 1 April 2010.

2017 rateable values (RV’s) should reflect the rental value of a property as at 1 April 2015.  The new rateable values can be challenged with representations made to the VOA in England & Wales and the Assessors Department in Scotland.

In England a new ‘Check, Challenge, Appeal’ system has been introduced.  This requires the ratepayer to provide information to the Valuation Office relating to the physical aspects of the property’s valuation.  Only once these factual matters have been checked, can the rateable value be challenged, with ratepayers then making further detailed representations to the VOA. The VO should then revert to the ratepayer either agreeing or disagreeing with the ratepayers. If the ratepayer is dissatisfied with that response, they may then pursue an appeal to the Valuation Tribunal and charges will apply at that stage.

In Scotland, the appeal process is broadly unchanged from previous revaluations and 2017 revaluation appeals had to be lodged with the Assessor before 30 September 2017.

There was a revaluation in Northern Ireland in 2015 (rateable values in Northern Ireland are set by the Land and Property Services www.lpsni.gov.uk). The UK Government has announced that the next revaluation in England & Wales will take place in 2021 (1 year earlier than planned) whilst the Scottish rates revaluation will be in 2022.

Whilst appeals following a revaluation are the most common route for rates savings, Material Change of Circumstance (MCC) appeals can also be submitted at any time in the revaluation cycle, where there has been a change in the environment which has affected the rental levels. New occupiers may also lodge an appeal within 6 months of acquisition of the property.

 

2017 Revaluation

 Current rateable values effective from 1 April 2017 reflect the rental value of the property as at April 2015.  Rateable values for all properties in England and Wales can be accessed via the VOA web site https://www.tax.service.gov.uk/view-my-valuation/cca/search. The rateable values for Scottish properties can be accessed on the Scottish Assessors Association portal at www.saa.gov.uk.

Appeal Rights

Revaluation Appeals

England

The English appeal system has been subject to significant change with the very recent introduction of the ‘Check, Challenge, Appeal’ process.  The Non-Domestic Rating (Alteration of Lists and Appeals) (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2017 (SI 2017/155) and The Valuation Tribunal for England (Council Tax and Rating Appeals) (Procedure) (Amendment) Regulation 2017 detail these amendments which are summarised below.

The ratepayer or the appointed agent must first of all register via the Government Gateway portal to ensure they have the legal right to review the rateable value.  Both ratepayer and agent must register and offer authentication to use the portal.  Once this process is satisfied, the ratepayer or appointed agent can progress to the ‘Check’ stage.

CHECK – Upon request the VOA must provide information it holds relating to the property that has been used in the valuation of that property.  The VOA may then specify any missing information that they expect to be returned by the ratepayer.  The ratepayer must then confirm the accuracy of the VOA information or highlight any error or inaccuracy.  The ratepayer must also confirm the accuracy of the information they have provided to the VOA.

This ‘Check’ stage is finalised when the VOA either confirms the accuracy of the information OR that any proposed changes have been accepted.  If the VOA makes no response, the stage is assumed complete after 12 months has elapsed from the confirmation of the information to the VOA.  This agreed information is then accepted to be the factual information to be used through the remainder of the appeal process.  Only once the check stage has been completed, the agent or ratepayer may progress to a ‘Challenge’.

CHALLENGE – A proposal to ‘Challenge’ the valuation can be made only once the ‘Check’ stage is complete.  There will be a 4 month deadline after completion of the ‘Check’ stage.  If the 4 month time period has elapsed, it will be necessary to repeat the ‘Check’ stage referred to above.  The ‘Challenge’ will require (i) grounds for the challenge (ii) detailed reasons and evidence and (iii) an alternative and specific revised valuation (not a generic figure that was previously considered acceptable under the earlier appeals process).  The VOA determines if sufficient information is provided to satisfy the requirements of the ‘Challenge’ process.  This stage can either lead to an agreement and revision of the rateable value OR withdrawal of the proposal.  If no agreement is reached, the VOA will issue a ‘Decision Notice’ setting out its decision together with reasons.  Only once a Decision Notice has been issued OR if 18 months has elapsed from the date of the proposal without a decision, will it be possible to make an appeal to the Valuation Tribunal.

APPEAL – An ‘Appeal’ must be made within 4 months of (i) the date of the decision notice OR (ii) upon the expiry of the aforementioned 18 month time limit.  The appeal can be against the notice itself OR the failure to issue a notice.  This process will involve an appeal fee, generally of £300 unless the proposer is a small business.  The appeal must include a copy of the Decision Notice, a copy of the proposal and any evidence forming part of it and any information provided by the VOA as part of the check stage.  The Tribunal will be restricted to considering only this evidence OR any agreed additional evidence, if it could not have been reasonably known at the time of the proposal being made.  The Tribunal must not take into account matters that did not form part of the initial grounds of the proposal and were not raised in evidence.  The appeal fee will be refunded for successful or partially successful appeals.

Scotland

There has been no significant change to the current appeal process in Scotland.  An appeal against the revaluation figure had to be lodged by 30 September 2017.  An appeal should properly identify the appeal property and contain an outline of the grounds of appeal, an alternative rateable value and an effective date.

Interim appeal rights also exist when a ratepayer acquires a new interest in a property or if there has been a change in circumstances.  In Scotland, a new occupier appeal must be lodged within 6 months of acquisition.  Also, if the rateable value is amended by the Assessor in Scotland, an appeal must be lodged within 6 months of the date of the Valuation Notice.

Material Change of Circumstances (MCC)

In addition to the above, an appeal can be submitted where a change has occurred whether in physical terms to the property or if the amenity has been affected in some way (material change of circumstances or MCC).  Such changes must have had a direct effect on the level of value of the property.  Alternatively the beneficial occupation of the property by the ratepayer may have been affected to some degree.  The most relevant examples are increased vacancy rates, competitor openings, roadworks or general disturbance.

In England, MCC appeals are once again subject to the constraints under the new ‘check, challenge, appeal’ changes detailed above.

In Scotland, various Court decisions make successful ‘material change of circumstance’ appeals difficult to achieve.  It is now a complex area of legislation and further guidance should be sought.

Rate Poundage

The rate poundage varies between England, Scotland and Wales and determines the actual bill that the ratepayer will pay.  Typically the rates bill will equate to the ‘RV x rate poundage’. However a transitional relief scheme exists in England and for certain categories in Scotland which may distort this calculation.

Non-Domestic Rates are devolved to the Scottish and Welsh Parliaments and as such decisions on matters such as the rate poundage and the various reliefs in Scotland and Wales are made by those parliamentary bodies.

Small Business Rates Relief (SBRR) – England

A ratepayer with a single property with an RV less than £12,000 will qualify for 100% rates relief.  If that property has an RV between £12,001 and £15,000 the relief will reduce gradually from 100% to 0%.

If you acquire a second property, you will keep getting any existing relief on your main property for 12 months.  You can still get small business rates relief on your main property after this if both the following apply:

Small Business Rates Relief (SBBS) – Scotland

A ratepayer with an individual property with an RV up to £15,000 will qualify for 100% rates relief.  If the rateable value is between £15,001 and £18,000 the relief will be 25%.  If the ratepayer has more than one commercial property with a combined RV between £18,001 and £35,000, they will get 25% on each individual property with an RV less than £18,000.

https://www.mygov.scot/business-rates-relief/small-business-bonus-scheme 

Liability Calculation

The actual rates bill will be determined by multiplying the rateable value by the appropriate rate poundage (hyperlink to rate poundage).  However, this may also be influenced in England by transitional relief.

Transitional Relief – What is it?

Transitional relief limits bill increases and decreases between rates revaluations.  The general TR scheme only applies in England (although there is a scheme for small properties in Wales). There is no general TR scheme in Scotland but certain categories qualify for some relief including hospitality, restaurants, pubs and Aberdeenshire offices.

The TR scheme sets out the % increases or decreases permitted ‘year on year’ in a revaluation period, which will cap rates bill increases OR reductions, until the true rates bill eventually becomes payable.

As a guide, a medium sized property with an RV between £20,000 (£28,000 in London) and £100,000 where the rateable value has increased at the 2017 Revaluation by more than 16.5% will benefit from TR in 2017/18.  If the rateable value has fallen by more than 6.5% the bill reduction will be limited by TR in 2017/18.

A large property with an RV more than £100,000, where the rateable value has increased at the 2017 Revaluation by more than 47%, will benefit from TR.  If the RV has reduced at all, it is likely that downwards TR will limit the bill decrease.

The transitional limits for the 2017 Rates Revaluation are shown below:

2016/17 to 2017/18 2017/18 to 2018/19 2018/19 to 2019/20 2019/20 to 2020/21 2020/21 to 2021/22
+ limit / -limit + limit / -limit + limit / -limit + limit / -limit + limit / -limit
Small  Property RV <£20,000 (£28,000 in London)  to £100,000 +5% / -20% +7.5% / -30% +10% / -35% +15% / -55% +15% / -55%
Medium  Property RV >£20,000 (£28,001 in London)  to <£100,000 +12.5% / -10% +17.5% / -15% +20% / -20% +25% / -25% +25% / -25%
Large Property RV >£100,001 +42% / -4.1% +32% / -4.6% +49% / -5.9% +16% / -5.8% +6% / -4.8%

The Scottish relief scheme, aimed primarily at the hospitality sector, permitted a gross increase in 2017/18 of 14.75% from the 2016/17 bill and in 2018/19 the increase, relative to the 2016/17 charge will be 32.9%.

Empty Property Relief

There are different schemes for the rating of unoccupied property in Scotland and England & Wales.

England & Wales

Persons entitled to possession are liable for 100% of the occupied liability after three months (six months for industrial properties). There are however limited exceptions summarised below:

  • Listed buildings
  • Charities
  • Community Amateur Sports Clubs (CASCs)
  • Insolvency
  • Properties with a rateable value less than £2,600

Anti-avoidance provisions have been introduced, preventing owners from constructively vandalising their own properties.

Scotland

A vacant property qualifies for 50% relief for first the 3 months with only 10% relief thereafter.  Industrial properties qualify for 100% relief for the first 6 months they are vacant, with 10% relief thereafter.  The relief is associated with the property not the ratepayer.  Therefore if a property has been vacant and, for example, the landlord then becomes responsible for rates payments, the previous ratepayer will have exhausted the 3 months 50% empty property relief.

There are Limited exemptions which qualify for indefinite 100% relief whilst vacant.

  • Listed buildings
  • Insolvency, bankruptcy or administration
  • Legal prohibition for occupying the property
  • Properties with a RV less than £1,700

A ‘Fresh Start’ scheme will give new occupants of all property types which have been empty for 6 months (which is a change from the previous 12 month benchmark) 100% relief for the first year of occupation.

Scotland – Business Growth Accelerator

Following the recommendations of the Barclay Review, the Scottish Government is now adopting a ‘Business Growth Accelerator’ meaning that from 1 April 2018, any increase in rateable value attributable to any improvement or expansion of an existing property will not be reflected in the rates bills for 12 months. Also, 100% rates relief will apply to new properties for the first 12 months. This is covered in the new regulations – The Non-Domestic Rates (New and Improved Properties) (Scotland) Regulations 2018.

Contact our head of rating for further advice:

Craig Wilson – 0131 558 5145 email: cwilson@eyco.co.uk

Case Studies

Restaurant & Leisure

"Eric Young & Co has developed significant expertise in the restaurant and leisure sectors."

Leisure is becoming central to the creation of a successful retail destination. Consumer shopping patterns have changed significantly and Eric Young & Co has developed extensive expertise in the restaurant and leisure sectors to enhance our existing core strengths and to allow us to provide the comprehensive service our clients require.

Our team has been busy acquiring for several major restaurant concepts including Byron, Pizza Express, Ask, Zizzi, Deliveroo Editions and Starbucks, as well as for younger more locally based brands including Bread Meats Bread and Tony Macaroni, with requirements from a host of other established and up and coming brands.

This expertise has been put to good use in a number of retail, leisure and mixed use developments over recent years and our team is currently advising on a number of shopping centre and city centre projects throughout Scotland and the North of England.

Case Studies

Retail Parks

"Our highly experienced team brings much more to the table than brokers, helping clients to develop long term leasing strategies with a view to adding value over a sustained period of time."

Our Retail Parks team acts for numerous landlords – including three of the five largest UK Retail Park owners. Our highly experienced team brings much more to the table than brokers, helping clients to develop long term leasing strategies with a view to adding value over a sustained period of time. Our retailer contacts and our extensive In Town and Shopping Centre experience are attributes which our clients value highly.

Our team also acts throughout the UK, acquiring and disposing of property for a significant number of major retail clients including Tesco, Primark, B&Q, Schuh, Brantano and Starbucks.

Case Studies

Retailer Representation

"We pride ourselves on the long term relationships we develop with our retail clients."

Our business has been built on a foundation of strong retailer contacts and we currently work for many national retailers assisting them with a variety of services including:

• Acquisitions
• Disposals
• Rent reviews
• Portfolio strategies
• Rating
• Lease renewals & re-gears

We pride ourselves on the long term relationships we develop with our retail clients. The majority of our business is repeat business and a good number of our clients have used our services for 10 years or more.

The pace of change in the retail market continues to increase and we ensure that we stay at the forefront of this to enable us to provide the quality of advice that our clients require.

Case Studies

Shopping Centres & Shopping Parks

"It is our strong retailer contacts, along with our understanding of the investment, valuation and development dynamics which allow us to perform the strategic role our clients value so much."

Our highly experienced team is well respected in the UK shopping centre market. We deal with a wide range of assets, from prime shopping centres and parks to value centres in smaller towns.

Honesty, realism and hard work are attributes we will demonstrate time and again, but in a vibrant and fast moving market it is our strong retailer contacts, along with our understanding of the investment, valuation and development dynamics, which allow us to perform the strategic role our clients value so much.

As a result, our team is advising on more Scottish shopping centres and parks than any other firm. We are retained letting agents on 22 shopping centres and 15 retail parks extending to 8.5 million sq ft of retail space.

Case Studies