Lower Swell Chemical | South West
Lower Swell Chemicals are an independent manufacturer based out of a warehouse in Cheltenham. As a supplier of cleaning and hygiene needs for the hospitality industry, as well as being a chemical manufacturer for the automotive industry, they needed an approach as industrious and flexible as they are.
The Challenge for the Client
While Lower Swell Chemicals had previously attempted to reduce their business rates liability, they had found that the government’s Check, Challenge, Appeal process was too difficult to navigate. With the belief that their property had been incorrectly valued, they decided to engage with a business rates reduction specialist to handle this for them, and with RVA Surveyors risk-free approach and consistent communication, they felt that RVA could offer them the best service for their business’s needs.
After they chose to engage with RVA, a surveyor was dispatched to carry out an on-site inspection where they were able to swiftly launch their investigation into a possible reduction. Due to the unique shape of the warehouse, the surveyor re-drew floor plans for a better representation of the property when compared to similar properties in the area. After several weeks of careful research, the surveyor found two inconsistencies which could allow a reduction in Lower Swell Chemicals business rates liability.
The first being that there was adverse access to the property; causing issues with loading and unloading large deliveries, and therefore having a negative effect on the daily running of the business. The second issue was that as the warehouse had a unique shape, it made it difficult to store large objects, impacting their use of the property itself.
With the information that had been carefully collated into a case, RVA Surveyors quickly lodged a Check to the Valuation Office Agency (VOA) on behalf of the client.
Unfortunately, the VOA did not agree to the proposed revisions included in the Check stage. As such, RVA Surveyors chose to quickly launch a Challenge, and then a second Check. In reviewing this, the VOA responded positively to the second Check, accepting the revisions to the property’s Rateable Value (RV) from £21,000 to £19,000. This 10% in reduction to the property’s RV meant that Lower Swell Chemicals had a total saving of over £5,000 (backdated to 1st April 2017, and going forward until at least 31st March 2023).
Client Comments and Recommendation
“The communication was great throughout and their surveyor was punctual and efficient. The current rating system is not fit for purpose and I would advise businesses to contact RVA Surveyors to overcome the overly complex government process.”