Forecourt owners in England and Wales can find out the new rateable value (RV) for their properties from today (September 30) after the Valuation Office Agency published its assessments for 2017. However, it may still be some time before they know how much their rates bill is going to be next year.

PRA chairman Brian Madderson explained several issues have still to be settled and he added: “It could be towards the end of the year before they know what they are going to pay.”

He also pointed out there was major unfairness in the way forecourt shops were assessed compared with convenience stores. Forecourt shops are assessed on turnover, while c-stores are assessed on their square footage. This means a c-store could be paying far less than a similar shop on a forecourt.

Paul Sewell, managing director of rating specialist MUA Property Services Ltd, which has worked closely with the PRA, said for individual sites it depended on how trade had varied since the last valuation in 2010, but overall he expected a modest rise in filling station RVs.

The VOA (Valuation Office Agency) considers three main factors when assessing a filling station; the shop, car wash and fuel volume. It has not changed the way it assesses the first two since the 2010 valuation, but it has tweaked its assumptions on the margin on fuel from 3ppl to 3.5ppl, so this would bump up RVs where volumes have risen.

To find out your rateable value go to