Independent businesses in Harrogate are facing one of their biggest challenges yet as the government prepares to bring in revised rateable values this Spring.
Draft rateable values have been published for commercial properties in North Yorkshire and local retailers and office-based companies have until April to check them and prepare for an appeal.
Commercial property specialist Dan Brumfitt of Harrogate agency FSS said the revaluation will see the biggest rates changes for more than a decade.
Dan Brumfitt said: Commercial properties in Harrogate were last valued back in 2008, before the recession, which has left many already paying unfairly high business rates.
The latest valuations, which are based on property values in April 2015, will be used to determine the business rates payable on the property and could be make or break for some independent businesses.
Every five years the underlying value of properties is re-assessed to bring the figures up to date and to take into account any changes that have been made during that time.
Dan urged businesses to check their draft rateable value now so that they could challenge the figures if necessary.
Dan added: FSS has successfully challenged the valuations on behalf of many local businesses in the past because the information they were based on was incorrect.
We would urge people to get in touch urgently if they think their draft Rateable Value is inaccurate so that we can help them prepare an appeal in time for the April deadline and avoid facing unnecessarily steep business rates changes.