Roche let two adjacent units to The Theatre Royal and K Foley Ltd ......
21 and 22 Kingsway, City Trading Estate, Norwich, NR2 4UD
Acting on behalf of Clipstone Industrial Trust, Roche have recently let two adjacent units of 2,370 sq ft, to separate occupiers - The Theatre Royal and K Foley Ltd. The properties had recently been refurbished and were let within 6 months of coming to the market at new record rents for the location , in the region of £7.00 per sq ft.
Sam Kingston, acting on behalf of the landlord commented "This edge of city location attracted a high degree of interest and the landlord was able to consider the most appropriate occupiers for the estate. Interest levels for good quality trade counter and industrial units remains buoyant , especially where they have been well maintained".
Trio of new tenants occupy Cringleford Business Centre ......
Cringleford Business Centre in Norwich attracts Three New Tenants
A trio of new tenants have taken occupation at the successful Cringleford Business Centre situated on the south side of Norwich at Intwood Road, NR4 6XB. The lettings were arranged by Roche Chartered Surveyors, the Norwich commercial property specialists.
Cambridge Community Services, an NHS Trust, has leased Suite 3 extending to 4,183 sq ft as an administrative base from which to run its local services.
Stable Pilates has moved into Suite 4 and has created a 2,221 sq ft studio, having relocated from Colney Hall.
Expanding recruitment consultants, Just Recruitment Solutions have moved from Ketteringham Hall into Suite 8B of 1,095 sq ft at Cringleford.
"These latest lettings reflect the continued demand for office accommodation with parking on the south side of Norwich. Over many years, Cringleford Business Centre has maintained its popularity by providing flexible and economical terms, having the significant benefit of being very close to the A11 and the A47 southern bypass. We have further new lettings in the pipeline," commented James Allen of Roche Chartered Surveyors who acts for the owner of Cringleford Business Centre.
Roche have acted as Party Wall Surveyors for property owners in Cathedral Street, Norwich ......
Party Wall Award - 17/19 Cathedral Street, Norwich NR1 1LU
Roche Chartered Surveyors have acted as Party Wall Surveyors for the owners of neighbouring properties on Cathedral Street in Norwich.
The properties are two neighbouring Victorian terrace buildings with extensions to the rear which total around 1,600 sq. ft. each. The owners of Number 19 wished to carry out substantial alterations to their building in order to convert it into two residential properties. The design involved a number of items that are classed as 'works to a party wall' under the Party Wall etc. Act 1996.
Roche Chartered Surveyors were approached by the owner of Number 17 who had received notice of the proposed works from the owner of Number 19. Through negotiation it was agreed that Roche would act as Agreed Surveyors for both parties to advise on the rights and the requirements of The Act. This culminated in a Party Wall Award which formally documented the works to be done and method to be undertaken.
The aim of the award is to protect both parties against claims for damage and prevent nuisance by agreeing how and when the works are undertaken. Roche's Chartered Building Surveyor responsible for the project, David Hall MRICS, commented "It is essential when undertaking work on Party Walls or boundaries to seek professional advice. This instruction proves that with the right approach the agreement does not have to be confrontational and serves to protect all parties involved."
Hints and tips in the run-up to the revaluation ......
A quick history lesson! Since 1990, Business Rates Revaluations have taken place at regular intervals, which, up until the most recent revaluation, were carried out every 5 years. The current revaluation date is set for the 1 April 2017, but keeping to sensible tradition, there has always been a preceding valuation date, usually 2 years before, called the Antecedent Valuation Date (AVD). Therefore, the prima facie evidence for the 2017 rating list will be market rents set as at 1 April 2015, nearly a year ago. The valuation is tempered by any relevant circumstances at the actual valuation date itself of 1.4.17, such as the physical layout and use, etc.
So in advance of this revaluation, the first consequence of it is, that ratepayers are likely to see an increase in requests for information from the Valuation Office Agency (VOA) in the "forms of return". These forms have to be completed by law and ask questions which are relevant such as the rent payable, the date the rent was set, and why it was set, detailed lease information etc. It is worth reiterating these forms must be completed by either the ratepayer or their agent.
The second consequence for ratepayers is that forecasting your actual rates payable beyond the revaluation date of 1 April 2017 is going to be very difficult. This is for the following main reasons:
- Business Rates Payable normally increase annually in line with the RPI index.
However, with a revaluation, the rateable value is likely to change and the new level of Uniform Business Rate (UBR) is to be set. The UBR is the multiplier to be applied to the rateable value.
- Transitional adjustments, which are the phasing in of new rateable values, may or may not be put in place.
The final major consequence, is that rate payers are highly likely to see a fall in rateable values, because of the fall in rental values in many sectors and parts of the country, especially in East Anglia, due to the economic recession, since the 2010 list was established using 2008 rents. Unfortunately, rates payable cannot be expected to fall in exactly the same way as the rateable values as the Government has a duty to maintain revenue and therefore the UBR is likely to offset substantive overall falls. This situation is highly likely to be exacerbated by the use of transitional reliefs. The exception to this scenario is in London where increased rateable values and increased UBR multiplier could result in a major effect on rates payable for those businesses located in the capital.
How can this affect the actual market rents payable now and in the future? For example retail rental values in Southwold have increased fourfold and in Great Yarmouth they have halved during the life of the current list. Over the life of the next list, which is likely to be for a period of 5 years, the amount of money available to tenants to pay for outgoings will remain fairly constant so monies available for rent will decrease in Southwold and increase in Great Yarmouth, thus this may have a direct effect on rental values and this should be factored into investment decisions going forward.
Publication dates of the new rateable values is likely to be September 2016 and from the start of this year, the VOA will need to value some 1.8 million non-domestic properties having a total value in the local rating lists of more than £57 billion.
One thing is hopefully certain, the principals of an appeal against any rating assessment will remain and relate to changes or inaccuracies in actual use, size, unique physical factors affecting premises and mode of occupation.
April 1st 2015 is not just April Fool's Day ..... it is also the actual valuation date for the 2017 Business Rating ...
Business Rates Update
April 1st 2015 is not just April Fool's Day ..... it is also the actual valuation date for the 2017 Business Rating Revaluation. Although the new rating list will not come into force until 1st April 2017, the revised values will be based on what will then be historic values as of this April. This ensures all properties share a common valuation date.
The basis for the revaluation will be market rental information pertinent to April 2015. It is acknowledged not all property will have a new rent established on that day as:
The premises may be occupied by the owner, rather than rented, or
There may be vacant accommodation, or
The passing rent may have been established at either an earlier or later date by way of a new letting, rent review or lease renewal.
However, in the majority of cases where premises have a contemporary rent, the rental evidence can be distilled into a rate per square metre, taking into account any relevant issues including the surrounding built environment, the physical characteristics of the premises, the lease terms agreed and any other pertinent factors.
The Valuation Office Agency (VOA) will consider all the evidence that it has collated to create a tone of values specific to an area that relate to premises of the same use, with the tone being adjusted to apply to each property, to reflect its unique characteristics.
Property occupiers may be asked to provide information on their property by the VOA, and should do so as it is a statutory obligation!
So, what this means is, any occupier who agrees a rent review or lease renewal or who acquires a new lease on premises in line with market conditions on or around 1st April this year, may have a good indication of the new rateable value which will apply in 2017. There is therefore extra incentive to make sure the rent is agreed at an appropriate level - to do otherwise might be doubly foolish
Jackie Crisp, FRICS, Partner, Roche Chartered Surveyors
Norwich will no longer be the largest city that is not connected to the motorway network via a dual carriageway ......
A11 dualling - the impact on commercial property
The long-suffering business community and residents of East Anglia that use the A11 as a means of connecting with the wider world, can finally look forward to the imminent opening of the last dual carriageway section of this vital trunk road.
Norwich will no longer be the largest city that is not connected to the motorway network via a dual carriageway. Journey times for people and goods will be reduced whilst predictability of arrival and delivery times will be dramatically improved. But what impact will this have on commercial property in East Anglia?
A sudden improvement in accessibility can change distribution patterns. The overall improvement in the accessibility of Norwich will undoubtedly enhance the City's appeal as a business location. However for distribution, it will now be easier for companies to cover the whole of East Anglia from, say, Thetford or Bury St Edmunds which are geographically more central. My firm is already advising logistics clients that are reviewing their operations in this way. Therefore, a boost for warehousing in the centre of the region.
Manufacturers will find it easier to get goods to and from East Anglia. This should reduce costs, improve service and therefore competitiveness. Logically, I expect to see improved demand for industrial units in Norfolk and Suffolk along the A11.
For retailers, critical considerations are catchment areas and drive-times. Therefore the big regional centres of Cambridge and Norwich will be further boosted by being more accessible from the centre of the region, possibly to the disadvantage of smaller towns between the main cities. Better communications within the region might also make East Anglia more attractive to big retailers such as IKEA and Decathlon as more households fall within an acceptable drive-time.
As far as offices are concerned, Norwich will be significantly enhanced, enabling it to challenge Cambridge with more credibility. With prime office rents exceeding £30 per square foot, arguably Cambridge has become over-heated. Norwich is roughly half this level and therefore well placed to take up the pressure. Norwich Research Park's competitive prospects are similarly enhanced.
It will take time for the consequences of this significant improvement in our road infrastructure to work through the economy and into the commercial property market. The overall impact will undoubtedly be positive but as improved accessibility opens up new markets, there will be greater challenges for businesses in some locations although I expect the over-riding impact to be extremely positive.
by James Allen, Senior Partner, Roche Chartered Surveyors, Norwich