Independent hotel owners could be entitled to rebates on their business rates bills worth tens of thousands of pounds, owing to declining revenues brought on by the recession and an oversupply of bedrooms.
Some hoteliers have received a reduction in rates of up to £90,000 following successful appeals, according to CVS, the UK's leading business rates specialist.
Don Baker, national head of rating at CVS, said: "A perfect storm is brewing for independent hotels as a result of declining guest numbers and increasing competition from budget chain hotels. Both have had a major impact on independent hotel revenues in many towns and the result is that many hotels are simply paying too much in business rates. Hotel operators need to ensure the Valuation Office Agency has up-to-date turnover and hotel oversupply information to produce accurate rateable values."
Business rates for hotels are based on the annual level of trade, excluding VAT, that a hotel can be expected to achieve assuming it is run efficiently. Hotels that have experienced a decline in trade or changes in their local area since their last valuation could be eligible for a rebate.
"Appealing business rates is often the most effective way of ensuring that a hotel business is paying the right amount in rates and the fact that we are achieving up to six-figure business rate reductions on appeals for many of our hotel clients shows how far the Valuation Office Agency's trade projections are from today's reality," Baker added.
CVS has successfully negotiated business rate reductions of £90,000 for the Cedar Court hotel in Huddersfield, £70,000 for the Gomersal Park Hotel in Cleckheaton and £40,000 for the Grosvenor Pulford Hotel in Wrexham.
By Janet Harmer
E-mail your comments to Janet Harmer here.
Looking for a new job? Find your next job here with Catererandhotelkeeper.com jobs
Blogs on Catererandhotelkeeper.com
Catch up with more news and gossip on all Caterer's blogs
For the latest hospitality news, sign up for our E-newsletters