Skip to main content

FAQs about LVT and the planning system

How would LVT interact with the British planning system? The Campaign received a list of questions on this subject recently from a research student. The questions and our responses are published here as they are so often raised.

As I understand it, you contend that urban fringe land would be valued at agricultural use until granted planning consent. Do you mean specific consent or inclusion within a development plan?
Under a system based on annual rental value assessment (ARV) valuation would have to be based on specific authorised consent. People cannot just put up a building and use it without consent. Enforcement action would be taken.

How would you value a vacant urban site for the purposes of LVT – do you envisage a valuation corresponding to what was previously developed on the site until planning permission for new development is attained?
As of day one, it is the existing use value or granted consent. Which may be only open storage or car parking or advertising hoarding if the site really is vacant.

As part of a general survey I would be grateful if you could also give responses to the following questions:

1. Do you think that development plans provide sufficient information in order to value land accurately at its highest and best use within the plan?
Only if the valuation is ARV. Otherwise it is highest and guessed use and then a deluge of appeals will follow.

2. Do you think a planning system that provides greater certainty over what may be developed is desirable, either specifically to support a LVT or in general?
The planning system already provides perfect clarity if ARV assessment is used. Either the consent or use is agreed or it is not. The information is in the planning registry. S106 will of course depress ARV. It would probably wither on the vine.

3. Do you think that a tax on vacant land would lead to a significant increase in brownfield development?
Not especially. Such a tax would be arbitrary. But LVT under ARV would discourage owners from letting land fall vacant in the future as the existing use tax liability would continue. It would discourage future dereliction of land.

4. Do you think that the scope and amenity of urban developments would be compromised by a tax on land values?
On the contrary. It would encouage the development of the most advantageous sites.

5. Do you think that a tax based on annual land revaluations could be simpler to administer than the current system of Council Tax and NNDR?
Obviously, because the quality and nature of buildings is ignored