Rating Manual section 6 part 3: valuation of all property classes

Section 620: public libraries

This publication is intended for Valuation Officers. It may contain links to internal resources that are not available through this version.

Practice note 1: 2017 - public libraries

1. Market appraisal

As with other publically funded facilities, the provision of library services has decreased with the current tightening of public finances.

The reduction in the number of libraries can clearly be seen in the following statistics. In 2003 /4 the number of libraries in the UK was 4,622. In 2009 / 10 this number had reduced to 4,482 and the number had fallen to 4,145 by 2015.

The Public Libraries News website further reports that the trend to reduce the number of outlets seems set to continue with nine libraries and three mobile libraries being confirmed closed since 1st April 2015 and a further fifty three static and sixteen mobile libraries being placed under threat of closure.

The culture of library use is also changing. In 2012 it was noted that visits to libraries decreased by 6.7% compared to 2007.

Adults were borrowing less fiction and non- fiction books with the only real growth in borrowing evidenced in children’s fiction.

The internet has played its part in the decline of library visits and this in itself has reflected in the way libraries have changed their operation with more space being devoted to providing IT facilities. It has been emphasised by The Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy that not all of the sector has been affected by the tightening of public finance, new builds and schemes of refurbishment have been appearing across the country. These include:-

  • Shard End Birmingham—A new £1.9 million library and community centre was built in 2012 although its hours of opening have now been reduced 73 to 40 hours a week

  • Barnsley–Plans for a new £50 million town centre library have been announced

  • South Tyneside—The Word, a new library and digital centre to be built

  • Lambeth —Streatham library re-opened after a £1.4 million refurbishment in March 2014

  • Manchester—£50 million refurbishment of the Central Library completed in March 2014

  • Milton Keynes—New Kingston Library opened January 2015

  • Kent—£450,000 refurbishment of Dartford library to possibly include a new “living centre” announced in August 2014

  • Stafford Library moving to new building in Staffordshire Place, expected to be open in September. Additions will include “digital touch tables”, innovation suite (including 3D printers and Raspberry Pi’s).

  • As local authorities seek to save money smaller libraries are being located in local authority owned shops in parades or centres

  • There is a significant trend to locate libraries in the same building as other community facilities. The buildings created are known as mixed use community hubs and can contain sports facilities, doctor and dentist surgeries and IT facilities. Savings are therefore made in accommodation and staff costs. Plans exist, for example, for Woodseats Library in Sheffield to be closed and the land to be redeveloped for a joint library, pharmacy and medical building. A children centre has been added to Bingham library in Nottinghamshire after a £720,000 refurbishment. The Shard End Birmingham development mentioned above will also house neighbourhood office facilities and a community centre.

  • In a study of new build libraries and refurbishment projects carried out after 2011 by Designing Libraries over 40% of the developments involved the co-location of services Local authorities have sought to cut costs by transferring library services to local Trusts and resident groups of volunteers For instance Castle Vale Library in Birmingham is to be run by the Castle Vale Tenants And Residents Alliance from November 2014 being the first in Birmingham to be the subject of a community asset transfer and run by volunteers with only one paid staff member. Hull library has been formally handed to Hull Culture and Leisure Trust and Merthyr Tydfil library is also to be run by a trust

  • The Service is also suffering from reduced opening hours and threats to close mobile library services. Enfield’s mobile service is under threat together with the likely closure of thirteen out of seventeen of its libraries. Some could be saved by allowing the operation to continue using volunteer labour.

2. Changes From The 2010 Practice Note

The sector is becoming increasingly more complex with the advent of libraries run by volunteers and trusts, libraries being affected by more restricted opening hours and libraries being part of a larger community hub building. These factors will affect the choice of valuation method to be adopted and the resultant rateable value calculation. When using the contractors basis as the preferred method of valuation, the following changes have been made. The costs to be applied at stage 1 of the contractors basis relate to the modern substitute and do not relate to the cost of replacing the actual building as was the approach adopted for the 2010 List. The age and obsolescence allowances applied at stage 2 now reflect all of the attributes and disadvantages of the actual hereditament in comparison with the modern substitute. The Multi floor allowance has been reviewed and amended.

3. Ratepayer Discussions

No discussions have taken place between any representative body or their agents

4. Valuation Scheme

4.1 Valuation Using Rental Evidence

Where libraries are situated in shopping parades or centres in shop units with minimal fit out, retail rents may be used as evidence as long as it can be demonstrated that a library user would be prepared to pay retail rents to secure the unit (Scottish and Newcastle (Retail) Ltd v Williams (VO) 2000 RA 119) The quality of the rental evidence will depend upon its propinquity to the rating hypothesis and its proximity to the AVD. New lettings involving building shells which are subsequently adapted or fitted out for library use may also be useful evidence of value, subject to appropriate adjustment for tenant’s improvements. Evidence on review of such hereditaments must be treated with extreme caution and not applied without sight of the actual lease terms on which the review is based; as such reviews may be geared to the value of the hereditament for alternative uses

4.2 Valuation Using The Contractor’s Basis

Where no direct rental evidence exists, the contractor’s basis should be used.

4.2.1 Stage 1 Estimated Replacement Cost

Building Costs

Normally, with the exception of areas that are patently not used, the actual GIA should be used to calculate the Estimated Replacement Cost (Stage 1) of the building. In particular, basement book storage should (unless clearly surplus to requirements) be included at the full rate. The storage of books and archive materials is an essential part of a public library service and has not been overtaken by new technology.

However, exceptionally, where it can be demonstrated by reference to design criteria current at the antecedent valuation date that a branch library is too big, the substitute building approach maybe considered. This does not apply to Central libraries. Where it is considered appropriate to adopt this approach to the valuation of a branch library the relevant specialist in the National Specialist Unit (NSU) must be consulted before proceeding.

In valuing main libraries that are of elaborate design it should be assumed that the library authority would still require one or two central libraries within its area, and so a cost higher than that typically used for branch libraries should be applied.

The costs shown in appendix A are for ease of reference. In all cases where a cost guide code is shown that must be input into the NBS template, not the costs shown here. Where the cost guide code shows options, the costs shown in this practice note should be used to aid selection. Should the cost guide show differing costs to those shown in a current version of this practice note, please refer to the CCT.

These costs are based on a building without air conditioning, where this exists an addition to the basic cost will need to be applied depending upon the particular circumstances. For larger &/or more modern Libraries a certain amount of mechanical air handling, falling short of full air conditioning, may be treated as being reflected within the Build Cost.

These costs should not be applied when assessing iconic flagship buildings such as for example the British Library, the Library of Birmingham and Canada Water in Southwark. Libraries such as these are to be cost on their own merits, having regard to actual costs where appropriate. When valuing such buildings it is suggested that NSU / CCT guidance should be sought

Multi Floor Allowances

An allowance of 7.5% overall should be made to the whole of individual pre-2005 buildings, of 4 or more floors where there are no lifts or they are inadequate. In the absence of evidence to the contrary, it will be assumed that pre-1980 buildings have inadequate or no lifts, but those completed between 1980 and 2005 have adequate lifts. Buildings completed in 2005 and afterwards will have adequate lifts to comply with the Disability Discrimination Act and relevant Building Regulations. Each principal building should be considered separately and 2 lifts are considered adequate.

This allowance is intended to reflect the operational difficulties of housing a library in a multi-storey building, in particular the problems of the public moving between different storeys. Where the lower floors of a building are larger than the upper floors, the caseworker will need to make a judgement as to the extent to which the extended parts of the lower floors should also benefit from the multi-storey allowance. This will depend on the use of the extension in the context of the use of the building. Where the use in the extension is related to the use in the building then it will be appropriate to apply the allowance to the extended part.

Flat Roof Allowance

Allowances attributable to the presence of a flat roof have been amended to accord with current advice as to both the durability of modern coverings and market perception. Buildings with a flat roof are to receive an end allowance as follows: a. £80m2 ARC is to be applied to the footprint of the flat roof for buildings constructed up to and including 2004. b. £60m2 ARC is to be applied the footprint of the flat roof for buildings constructed after 2004.

Where a building has varying roof types a reasonable apportionment should be made to arrive at the allowance.

What is flat as opposed to a pitched roof will generally be self-evident. In instances where an allowance is sought for pitched roofing caseworkers should seek advice from the National Specialist Unit before proceeding.

This allowance is not to be applied to systems built libraries and libraries of temporary construction.

System Built Libraries

Costs for system built libraries are shown in Appendix A below. The lower end of the range will apply, typically, to a lightweight steel framed building with infill panels and flat felt roof, whilst the upper end of the range will be used for a partly brick built structure with some infill panels and pitched felt roof.

Portable Buildings

The cost for portable buildings are given in Appendix A below

4.2.2 External Works

Additions are to be made in accordance with the guidelines given in Appendix B below.

4.2.3 Contract size adjustments should be made in accordance with standard scales in the 2017 Cost Guide.

4.2.4 Location Factors are to be applied in accordance with the figures given in the 2017 Cost Guide

4.2.5 An addition for Fees should be made in accordance with the guidance in the 2017 Cost Guide

4.2.6 Stage 2 – Age and Obsolescence

The standard age-related allowances scale contained in the Rating Manual section 4 part 3 should be applied in most circumstances.

Limited Opening Hours

For small local libraries typically less than £10,000 RV serving centres of population of less than 7,500 persons the following allowances should be made where the opening hours are less than 25 hours per week.

Research has been undertaken into the viability of small local libraries of the type identified above, which suggests that in many cases it would not be viable for local authorities to construct a substitute and would instead make provision of a mobile library service. It is recognised that the significant limiting of opening hours is a measure to reduce costs at these less viable facilities and reflects the low demand relative to the cost of supplying the service.

Opening Hours % Allowance
21 – 25 hrs per week 7.5 %
18 – 20 hrs per week 15 %
15 – 17 hrs per week 20 %
Less than 15 hrs 25 %

The above scale is to be applied sequentially, after any standard age and obsolescence allowance. For the avoidance of doubt, these Stage 2 allowances should not be aggregated prior to being applied and therefore any allowance for limited opening hours should be applied to the figure already depreciated for Age & Obsolescence

4.2.7 Stage 3 – Land value

The developed land value additions are shown in Appendix C below and are taken as percentages of the total aggregate adjusted replacement cost. Developed land is defined as land consisting of the footprint of all buildings, associated landscaped areas, roadways, car parks, hard standings and, paths, Any additional land on the site will be viewed as undeveloped land and valued as amenity land for the appropriate region as detailed in the 2017 Land Value Practice Note

4.2.8 Stage 4 –Decapitalisation Rate

The effective capital value (ECV) of the hereditament shall be de-capitalised to an annual equivalent by taking the prescribed (higher) rate Please note that libraries are not educational buildings within the statutory meaning

4.2.9 Stage 5 – End Adjustments

Any advantage or disadvantage, which might affect the value of the occupation of the hereditament as a whole, should be reflected at this stage. An adjustment under this head should not duplicate adjustments made elsewhere

Issues that it may be pertinent to consider at this stage are (this list is for guidance only and is not exhaustive)

Poor or Inflexible Layout which cause operational difficulties. 5.0%

Inadequate Staff Room / Meeting Room Facilities 2.5%

Inadequate Toilet Facilities. (i.e. Staff 1.25% & Public 1.25%) 2.5%

No on-site parking and no public car-park or on street parking in the vicinity 7.5%. This allowance is unlikely to be applicable to town and city centre libraries

Where a library has oil, LPG fired central heating or electrical heating, an end allowance of 5% shall be applied to the valuation

The above are suggested maximum allowances. It is considered probable that some or all of these maximums may apply to a small minority of libraries in each local authority area

Where allowances are appropriate it is expected that they should not normally exceed 15%. Furthermore, it would be unusual for one issue in isolation will warrant the full allowance.

When taking all factors to be considered at Stage 5 into account these will not normally exceed 15% in total. However, exceptionally, where a flat roof allowance, considered by itself, amounts to 15% or more of the value resulting from Stages 1- 4, additional allowance may be given for other stage 5 factors, provided that the total aggregate allowance for all stage 5 factors does not normally exceed 20%. Any Stage 5 allowances over 20% should be subject to consultation with NSU or CCT members.

Vacant Libraries

Where a Library is vacant at AVD due to a lack of demand, and there is no prospect of an alternative use within the same mode or category of occupation, the hereditament should be shown in the list at RV of £0.

Where post AVD there is an MCC which results in the closure of the library, such as opening of a new library close by or demolition/decanting of a large area of housing close by, then this may be reflected at the appropriate date

4.10 IT Support

Where the Contractor’s Basis is appropriate the standard generic Contractor’s Spreadsheet held on the Non Bulk Server should be used for all valuations selecting ‘Libraries’ from the drop-down menu.

Where the rentals method of valuation is employed, records should be captured and valuations carried out by applying an appropriate scheme using the Rating Support Application (RSA)

Rating Manual : section 6 part 3 : Section 620 : Public Libraries : Practice Note 1: Revaluation 2017

Appendix A

Building Costs

The costs to be used in valuing this property class are given below.

   
  Cost Guide Code   Cost £/ m2
Central Libraries 64500A 1,997
Branch Libraries 64500D 1,716
System Built Libraries                                 64500J 885-1092
Temporary Buildings with no WC  64500L 541
Temporary Building, with WC 64500P 631
     

Iconic library buildings to be individually cost (see 4.2.1 above).

Appendix B

Suggested % addition for External Works

"Low" build cost (c£850/m2) "Average" build cost (c£1050/m2) "High" build cost (c£1500/m2) Building ratio*/description
3.5% 2.5% 2% Town centre or island site typically with n 90% or greater building ratio, no more than a small yard or garden area, and either no car parking, or a very limited number of spaces within the hereditament.
7.5% 5% 2.5% As above, but typically with an 80% to 90% building ratio, limited parking, external lighting and landscaping and some boundary fencing.
10% 7.5% 5% Site typically with 50%/75% building ratio, some landscaping around buildings, secure boundary fencing, adequate parking, external lighting and landscaping with limited general parking within the hereditament and boundary fencing.
12.5% 10% 7.5% As above, but typically with 25%/50% building ratio, landscaping around buildings, secure boundary fencing, external lighting, adequate parking within the hereditament which falls short of full requirements,.
17.5% 15% 12.5% Site typically with about 25% building ratio, landscaping around buildings, secure boundary fencing, external lighting and adequate parking within the hereditament for all staff and other users.

Appendix C

Developed Land Value

Central Libraries Branch Libraries   Branch Libraries (Systems Built and Temporary Buildings)
Geographic area in which library is located % Addition to ARC % Addition to ARC Urban Location % Addition  to ARC Rural Location % Addition to ARC Urban Location % Addition  to ARC Rural Location
Central London N 34.00 35.00 N/A 67.75  
Central London S 12.50 13.25 N/A 25.75  
GLNW 4.75 8.25 N/A 16.00  
GLSW 11.00 25.00 N/A 48.50  
GLNE 6.75 12.00 N/A 23.25  
GLSE 8.50 15.00 N/A 29.00  
North East 1.00 2.75 1.37 5.25 2.60
North West 2.25 5.85 2.92 11.25 5.60
Yorkshire & Humberside 2.00 5.00 2.50 9.75 4.85
East Midlands 1.15 2.75 1.37 5.25 2.60
West Midlands 1.90 4.85 2.42 9.40 4.70
East of England 3.50 9.25 4.62 18.00 9.00
South East 3.30 8.75 4.37 17.00 8.50
South West 2.50 6.25 3.12 12.00 6.00
North Wales 1.65 4.00 2.00 7.75 3.75
South Wales 2.00 5.25 2.62 10.00 5.00
Cardiff 5.00 13.00 N/A 25.00 N/A

Notes

1.Caseworkers should use their own discretion in deciding between “urban” and “rural” categories, but it is suggested that libraries located in villages with a population in excess of 3,000 and above should be regarded as urban in this context

1.The land Value addition for Iconic Library buildings is to be arrived at my applying the appropriate residential value (without discount) as stated in the 2017 Land Value Practice Note for the location in question to the actual developed land area.

Practice note 1: 2010: Public libraries

1. Co-ordination Arrangements

This is a generalist class. Responsibility for ensuring effective co-ordination lies with NDR business units.. For more information see Rating Manual - section 6 part 1: Practice Note 1: 2010.

The R 2010 Special Category Code 156 should be used. The appropriate suffix letter is G.

2. Approach to the Valuation

Caseworkers should have regard to the contents of RM 5: Section 620 in carrying out valuations for the 2010 Rating Lists.

The following guidance relates to the valuation for rating purposes of Public Libraries other than those for which, rebus sic stantibus (as it stands), a rental market exists. The valuation approach to be applied is the Contractors Basis.

Care should also be taken when valuing libraries occupied by parish councils or bodies other than local authorities where a rent may be passing and for which regard may need to be had to ability to pay.

Where a Library is located in a former shop or office with little or no adaptation and there exists recent direct evidence of a new letting demonstrating that the rent passing is commensurate with local rental tone, the library may be valued by reference to that direct rental evidence. New lettings involving building shells which are subsequently adapted or fitted out for library use may also be useful evidence of value, subject to appropriate adjustment for tenant’s improvements. Evidence on review of such hereditaments must be treated with extreme caution and not applied without sight of the actual lease terms on which the review is based; as such reviews may be geared to the value of the hereditament for alternative uses.

For an account of the background to the public library service, see Appendix 1 to R2000 Practice Note.

The following website also provides useful information on the design/construction of library buildings;

http://www.designinglibraries.org.uk

This property is valued using the non-bulk server. The manual can be accessed here.

3. The Contractors Basis

3.1 Stage 1 (Building Cost)

Normally, with the exception of areas that are patently not used, the actual GIA should be used to calculate the Estimated Replacement Cost (Stage 1) of the building. In particular, basement book storage should (unless clearly surplus to requirements) be included at the full rate. The storage of books and archive materials is an essential part of a public library service and has not been overtaken by new technology. However, exceptionally, where it can be demonstrated by reference to design criteria current at the antecedent valuation date that a branch library is too big the substitute building approach maybe considered. This does not apply to Central libraries. (Where it is considered appropriate to adopt this approach to the valuation of a branch library the relevant specialist in NSU must be consulted before proceeding). In valuing main libraries that are of elaborate design it should be assumed that the library authority would still require one or two central libraries within its area, and so a cost higher than that typically used for branch libraries should be applied.

The costs to be applied are: -

Age Central Libraries Branch Libraries
Post 2006 £1,920/m2 1,650/m2
2005 -2006 £1,862/m2 £1,600/m2
1995 – 2004 £1,730/m2 £1,475/m2
1985 – 1994 £1,471/m2 £1,274/m2
Pre 1985 £1,305/m2 £1,084 /m2

These costs are based on a building without air conditioning, where this exists an addition to the basic cost will need to be applied depending upon the particular circumstances. For larger &/or more modern Libraries a certain amount of mechanical air handling, falling short of full air conditioning, may be treated as being reflected within the Build Cost.

The costs above should not be applied when assessing iconic flagship buildings such as for example the British Library, the Library of Birmingham and Canada Water in Southwark. Libraries such as these are to be cost on their own merits, having regard to actual costs where appropriate.

Multi Storey Allowance

The following general allowances should be made to the whole of individual buildings with the following number of storeys. To this end, each principal building should be considered separately:

Branch Library Central Library
3 storeys 5% Nil
4 storeys 10% 2.5%
5 - 7 storeys 17.5% 7.5%
8 storeys & over 22.5% on 8th floor & above, 17.5% on 7th floor & below 12.5% on 8th floor & above, 7.5% on 7th floor & below

The differential between Branch & Central Libraries is that the latter tend to have more departments, which may typically suit a layout of up to 3 storeys.

These allowances are intended to reflect the operational difficulties of housing a library in a multi-storey building. In particular, they reflect the problems of members of the public moving between different storeys. Where the lower floors of a building are larger than the upper floors, the caseworker will need to make a judgement as to the extent to which the extended parts of the lower floors should also benefit from the multi-storey allowance. This will depend on the use of the extension in the context of the use of the building. Where the use in the extension is related to the use in the building then it will be appropriate to apply the allowance to the extended part.

System Built Libraries

The cost to be adopted in respect of a system built library will be in the range of £850 –1050 per m2. The lower end of the range will apply, typically, to a lightweight steel framed building with infill panels and flat felt roof, whilst the upper end of the range will be used for a partly brick built structure with some infill panels and pitched felt roof.

Portable Buildings

Adjusted £/m2 Adjusted £/m2
Date Temp, no WC (TN) Temp, with WC (TW)
Pre 1995 1995 – 1999 2000 – 2002 2003 Onwards £302/m2 £431/m2 £493/m2 £520/m2 £353/m2 £506/m2 £579/m2 £607/m2

The date of any building shall be taken to be 12 months prior to its first use. Where a building has been substantially altered at a later date, its date for the purpose of these tables should be adopted as being representative of the building as a whole.

The costs shown in the table above are exclusive of fees and external works. This cost reflects standard obsolescence for this type of building and no further allowance should be made.

External Works

An addition for external works would typically be in the range of 2 ½ % - 10 %. The following percentages would normally apply but are not intended to be prescriptive: -

Description Max. Addition
A site with almost 100% site coverage or a branch library with only garden areas and no parking. * In exceptional circumstances, for libraries where plot ratio is typically over 800% with minimal external works, a minimum addition of 1% may be applied. 2 ½ %*
A site with possibly 2-3 car parking spaces for staff/public & a minimal amount of landscaping. 5 %
A site with adequate car parking typically 4-7 spaces and sufficient landscaping. 7 ½ %
An expansive site, with in excess of 8 spaces and significant amounts of landscaping. 10 %

Where actual landscaping is considered to be excessive and would not be replicated in the modern substitute, the appropriate external works percentage should be arrived at having regard to the lesser notional external works.

When considering the appropriate addition regard should be had not only to the extent of the external works but also to the number of storeys as this will increase the ERC without necessarily increasing the cost of external works.

Contract Size & Location Adjustments

Contract size adjustments should be made, and location factors applied in respect of this class in accordance with the scales in the cost guide.

Fees

Guidance on the amount to be added for fees is provided by the R2010 Cost Guide. An addition for fees of 13% is appropriate for most libraries. The exceptions being system built libraries where 10% and portable buildings where 7 ½ % would be appropriate.

3.2 Stage 2 (Age and Obsolescence Allowances)

The following scale is intended to provide a degree of uniformity of allowance but need not rigidly be applied. In the case of buildings which have been significantly refurbished a lower allowance may be applied, particularly where the works undertaken have enabled internal re-modelling to improve the functional aspects of the library. The allowances should not be applied to portable buildings

Year of Completion % Allowance
2000 onwards 0 – 5
1990 – 1999 6 – 15
1985 – 1989 16 – 20
1970 – 1984 21 – 35
1960 – 1969 36 – 45
Pre 1960 45 – 50

It would not normally be appropriate to make an allowance in excess of 50%, since few buildings of this age are likely to exist in their original form. Most will have been the subject of modernisation programs and will have been improved to a standard comparable with a more recent age band. Higher allowances should therefore only be granted in exceptional circumstances, on particular facts.

Care should be taken when considering the potential difficulties of implementing policies on new technologies e.g. The New Library Network .The most significant cost element there will be in the provision of non-rateable elements (multi-media terminals) which do not impact on the value of the hereditament. Only the provision of additional wiring and sockets would affect rateable value. Space requirements to fulfil the possible need to provide for new technologies will be less problematic where efficient book management systems are in place to reduce shelf-space requirements.

Limited Opening Hours

For small local libraries typically less than £10,000 RV serving centres of population of less than 7,500 persons the following allowances should be made where the opening hours are less than 25 hours per week.

Research has been undertaken into the viability of small local libraries of the type identified above, which suggests that in many cases it would not be viable for local authorities to construct a substitute and would instead make provision of a mobile library service. It is recognised that the significant limiting of opening hours is a measure to reduce costs at these less viable facilities and reflects the low demand relative to the cost of supplying the service.

Opening Hours

Allowance

21 – 25 hrs per week

7.5 %

18 – 20 hrs per week

15 %

15 – 17 hrs per week

20 %

Less than 15 hrs

25 %

The above scale is to be applied sequentially, after any standard age and obsolescence allowance. For the avoidance of doubt, these Stage 2 allowances should not be aggregated prior to being applied and therefore any allowance for limited opening hours should be applied to the figure already depreciated for Age & Obsolescence.

3.3 Stage 3: Land Value

The following percentages are recommended to be applied to the results of Stages 1 and 2 to arrive at the appropriate land value:

Location

Central Libraries

Urban Branch Libraries

Rural Branch Libraries

Central London

20%

40%

N/a

Inner London (exc Central London)

17.5%

25%

N/a

Outer London

15%

21%

N/a

M 25 belt

12.75%

15.5%

7.75%

Rest of South East

7.5%

9.25%

4.625%

Rest of England & Wales

5.5%

6.5%

3.25%

For the purposes of the above table:

a. Central London should be taken to include the following postal districts: EC & WC, W1, W2, W11, W8, SW1, SW3, SW5, SW7 and SW10 Postal Districts)

b. Inner London should be taken to include the London Boroughs of Hammersmith & Fulham, Camden, Islington, Hackney, Tower Hamlets, Greenwich, Lewisham, Lambeth, Southwark, Wandsworth, and the Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea and the Cities of London and of Westminster (excluding portions falling within Central London as defined)

c. Outer London should be taken to be the remaining London Boroughs

d. The M25 Belt should be taken to be the whole county of Surrey, plus Windsor & Maidenhead, Slough, Wokingham, Bracknell Forest, South Bucks, Chiltern, Wycombe Reading, Oxford (City), Cambridge (City), Dacorum, Three Rivers, Watford, St Alban’s , Hertsmere, Welwyn/Hatfield , E Herts, Broxbourne, Epping Forest, Brentwood, and Sevenoaks

e. The Rest of South East consists of those parts of the counties of Kent, East Sussex, West Sussex, Hants (exc Isle of Wight), Berks, Bucks, Oxon, Herts, Beds, and Essex,( to the extent that they exclude the BAs listed as in the M25 belt), plus Bournemouth, Poole and Christchurch

NB

(i ) It is not intended that there should be abrupt changes in the approach to site values between the above locational groupings, and shading of these percentages may need to be applied close to their boundaries.

(ii) Caseworkers should use their own discretion in deciding between “urban” and “rural” categories, but it is suggested that the sites of hereditaments situated on the fringe of build-up areas with populations not exceeding 3000 should be designated rural. While shading between the rural and urban percentages is permitted for schools sited on the urban fringe, it should only be applied where the developed land within the school hereditament falls within an area where alternative development would not be likely to be permitted.

3.4 Stage 4 (Decapitalisation Rate)

The Adjusted Replacement Cost (ARC) of the hereditament shall be decapitalised to an annual equivalent by taking the prescribed rate. Please note that libraries are not educational buildings within the statutory meaning and the lower decapitalisation rate should not be used.

3.5 Stage 5 (End adjustments)

Any advantage or disadvantage, which might affect the value of the occupation of the hereditament as a whole should be reflected at this stage. Issues that it may be pertinent to consider at this stage are (this list is for guidance only and is not exhaustive)

Poor or Inflexible Layout which cause operational difficulties. 5.0%

Inadequate Staff Room / Meeting Room Facilities 2.5%

Inadequate Toilet Facilities. (ie Staff 1.25% & Public 1.25%) 2.5%

No on site parking nor public car-parking close by. 7.5%

The above are suggested maximum allowances. It is considered probable that some or all of these maximums may apply to a small minority of libraries in each local authority area

Flat Roof Allowance

For all Libraries with flat roofs , a reduction of decap rate x £80 psm of roof ‘foot print’ should be made to the value of buildings aged up to and including 2004 and £60 psm for post 2004 buildings up to a maximum allowance of 15%.

Where a building has varying roof types a reasonable apportionment should be made to arrive at the allowance.

What is flat as opposed to a pitched roof will generally be self evident. Flat roofing allowances will automatically apply here to all types of flat roof. In instances where an allowance is sought for pitched roofing caseworkers should seek advice from the National Specialist Unit before proceeding.

Oil, LPG or Electric Central Heating

Where a library has oil, LPG fired central heating or electrical heating, an end allowance of 5% shall be applied to the valuation

Any adjustment made at Stage 5 should not duplicate adjustments made elsewhere, in particular care should be taken that any allowance for layout does not duplicate an allowance for multi-storey where already given.

Where allowances are appropriate it is expected that they should not normally exceed 15%. Furthermore, it would be unusual for one issue in isolation will warrant the full allowance.

When taking all factors to be considered at Stage 5 into account these will not normally exceed 15% in total. However, exceptionally, where a flat roof allowance, considered by itself, amounts to 15% or more of the value resulting from Stages 1- 4, while the allowance for flat roof is capped at 15%, additional allowance may be given for other stage 5 factors, provided that the total aggregate allowance for all stage 5 factors should not normally exceed 20%.

3.6 Vacant Libraries

Where a Library is vacant at AVD due to a lack of demand, and there is no prospect of an alternative use within the same mode or category of occupation, the hereditament should be shown in the list at an RV of £1.

Where post AVD there is an MCC which results in the closure of the library, such as opening of a new library close by or demolition/decanting of a large area of housing close by, then this may be reflected at the appropriate date

4. IT Support

Where the Contractors basis is appropriate the standard generic Contractors Spreadsheet should be used. It can be accessed from the Desk Top icon Non-Bulk R2010. Instructions for use are provided in the Non-Bulk Server Manual on the Rating Homepage.

Practice note: 2005 : Public libraries

1. Co-ordination Arrangements

This is a Group class. Responsibility for ensuring effective co-ordination lies with Groups. For more information see Rating Manual - section 6 part 1: Practice Note 1: 2005.

The R 2005 Special Category Code 156 should be used. The appropriate suffix letter is G.

2. Approach to the Valuation

Valuers should have regard to the contents of RM 5: Section 620 in carrying out valuations for the 2005 Rating Lists.

The following guidance relates to the valuation for rating purposes of Public Libraries which are other than those for which, rebus sic stantibus, a rental market exists and which can be valued only by the Contractors Basis. This basis has been agreed with a consortium of agents representing various Local Authorities.

Care should also be taken when valuing libraries occupied by parish councils or bodies other than local authorities where a rent may be passing and for which regard may need to be had to ability to pay.

For Libraries which are located in former shops or offices with little or no adaptation and for which recent direct evidence of a new letting is available which demonstrates that the rent passing is commensurate with local rental tone, may be valued by reference to that direct rental evidence. Evidence on review of such hereditaments must be treated with extreme caution and not used without sight of the actual lease terms on which the review is based, as this may be tied to the level of rents for an alternative use.

For an account of the background to the public library service, see Appendix 1 to R2000 Practice Note.

3. The Contractors Basis

3.1 General

Rating Manual section 6 part 3: Section 600: Para 4.3.2 sets out the general approach to be adopted in circumstances where the Contractors Basis applies. For consistency however valuers should note the points below.

3.2 Stage 1

Building Cost

With the exception of areas that are patently not used, the actual GIA should be used to calculate the Estimated Replacement Cost (Stage 1) of the building. In particular, basement book storage should (unless clearly surplus to requirements) be included at the full rate. The storage of books and archive materials is an essential part of a public library service and has not been overtaken by new technology. In valuing main libraries that are of elaborate design it should be assumed that the library authority would still require one or two “flagship” libraries within its area, and so a cost higher than that typically used for branch libraries should be applied. On the basis of the 2000 scheme, the updated costs to be applied are: -

Central Libraries £ 1,085 /m2 Branch Libraries £ 940 /m2

These costs are based on a building without air conditioning, where this exists an addition to the basic cost will need to be applied depending upon the particular circumstances. For larger &/or more modern Libraries a certain amount of mechanical air handling, falling short of full air conditioning, may be treated as being reflected within the Build Cost.

Multi Storey Allowance

The following general allowances should be made to the whole of individual buildings with the following number of storeys. To this end, each principal building should be considered separately:

Branch Library Central Library

3 storeys 5% Nil

4 storeys 10% 2.5%

5 storeys 17.5% 7.5%

8 storeys 22.5% on 8th floor & above 12.5% on 8th floor & above

17.5% on 5th floor & below 7.5% on 5th floor & below

The differential between Branch & Central Libraries is that the latter tend to have more departments, which may typically suit a layout of up to 3 storeys.

These allowances are intended to reflected the operational difficulties of housing a library in a multi-storey building. In particular, they reflect the problems of members of the public moving between different storeys. Where the lower floors of a building are larger than the upper floors, the caseworker will need to make a judgement as to the extent to which the extended parts of the lower floors should also benefit from the multi-storey allowance. This will depend on the use of the extension in the context of the use of the building. Where the use in the extension is related to the use in the building then it will be appropriate to apply the allowance to the extended part.

System Built Libraries

The cost to be adopted in respect of a system built library will be in the range of £630 – 775 per m2. The lower end of the range will apply, typically, to a lightweight steel framed building with infill panels and flat felt roof, whilst the upper end of the range will be used for a partly brick built structure with some infill panels and pitched felt roof.

Portable Buildings

Adjusted £/m2 Adjusted £/m2
Date Temp, no WC (TN) Temp, with WC (TW)
Pre 1995 1995 – 1999 2000 – 2002 2003 Onwards £260/m2 £372/m2 £425/m2 £448/m2 £304/m2 £437/m2 £499/m2 £523/m2

The date of any building shall be taken to be 12 months prior to its first use. Where a building has been substantially altered at a later date, its date for the purpose of these tables should be adopted as being representative of the building as a whole.

The costs shown in the table above are exclusive of fees and external works. This cost reflects standard obsolescence for this type of building and no further allowance should be made.

External Works

An addition for external works would typically be in the range of 2-½ % - 10 %. The following percentages would normally apply but are not intended to be prescriptive: -

Description Max. Addition
A site with almost 100% site coverage or a branch library with only garden areas and no parking. * In exceptional circumstances, for libraries where plot ratio is typically over 800% with minimal external works, a minimum addition of 1% may be applied. 2 ½ %*
A site with possibly 2-3 car parking spaces for staff/public & a minimal amount of landscaping. 5 %
A site with adequate car parking typically 4-7 spaces and sufficient landscaping. 7 ½ %
An expansive site, with in excess of 8 spaces and significant amounts of landscaping. 10 %

Where actual landscaping is considered to be excessive and would not be replicated in the modern substitute, the appropriate external works percentage should be arrived at having regard to the lesser notional external works.

When considering the appropriate addition regard should be had not only to the extent of the external works but also to the number of storeys as this will increase the ERC without necessarily increasing the cost of external works.

Contract Size & Location Adjustments

Contract size adjustments should be made, and location factors applied in respect of this class in accordance with the scales in the cost guide.

Fees

Guidance on the amount to be added for fees is provided by the R2005 Cost Guide. An addition for fees of 13% is appropriate for most libraries. The exceptions being system built libraries where 10% and portable buildings where 7 ½ % would be appropriate.

3.3 Stage 2

The following scale is intended to provide a degree of uniformity of allowance but need not rigidly be applied. In the case of buildings which have been significantly refurbished a lower allowance may be applied, particularly where the works undertaken have enabled internal re-modelling to improve the functional aspects of the library.

Year of Completion % Allowance
1995 onwards 0 – 5
1985 – 1994 6 – 15
1980 – 1984 16 – 20
1965 – 1979 21 – 35
1955 – 1964 36 – 45
Pre 1955 45 – 50

It would not normally be appropriate to concede an allowance in excess of 50%, since few buildings of this age are likely to exist in their original form. Most will have been the subject of modernisation programs and will have been improved to a standard comparable with a more recent age band. Higher allowances should therefore only be granted in exceptional circumstances, on particular facts.

Care should be taken when considering the potential difficulties of implementing policies on new technologies e.g. The New Library Network .The most significant cost element there will be in the provision of non-rateable elements (multi-media terminals) which do not impact on the value of the hereditament. Only the provision of additional wiring and sockets would affect rateable value. Space requirements to fulfil the possible need to provide for new technologies will be less problematic where efficient book management systems are in place to reduce shelf-space requirements.

Limited Opening Hours.

For small local libraries typically less than £7,500 RV serving centres of population of less than 7,500 persons the following allowances should be made where the opening hours are less than 25 hours per week.

Research has been undertaken into the viability of small local libraries of the type identified above, which suggests that in many cases it would not be viable for local authorities to construct a substitute and would instead make provision of a mobile library service. It is recognised that the significant limiting of opening hours is a measure to reduce costs at these less viable facilities and reflects the low demand relative to the cost of supplying the service.

Opening Hours % Allowance
21 – 25 hrs per week 7.5 %
18 – 20 hrs per week 15 %
15 – 17 hrs per week 20 %
Less than 15 hrs 25 %

The above scale is to be applied sequentially, after any standard age and obsolescence allowance. For the avoidance of doubt, these Stage 2 allowances should not be aggregated prior to being applied and therefore any allowance for limited opening hours should be applied to the figure already depreciated for Age & Obsolescence.

3.4 Land Value

Urban Rural
Central London (EC & WC, W1, W2, W11, W8, SW1, SW3,SW5, SW7 and SW10 Postal Districts) Inner London (SW6, W9, W10, W12, W14, NW1 NW8, N1 E1, E2, SE1(North)*) London boroughs of Enfield, Barnet, Harrow, Brent, Hillingdon, Ealing, Hounslow, Richmond, Kingston, Wandsworth, Merton, Bromley, and those parts of Camden, Westminster,Kensington & Chelsea, and Hammersmith & Fulham outside the defined postal districts for the London Central and Inner zones 40% 25% N/A N/A
Remainder of London & Heathrow - M25 Belt Remainder of the London Boroughs (including SE1 (south)*) and the Heathrow - M25 belt and the London peripheral libraries. 20% 12.5

12.5%

The "Heathrow -M25 belt" is for this purpose defined as the following Billing Authority areas:
Hertfordshire: Hertsmere, St Albans, Three Rivers,
Watford, Dacorum
Buckinghamshire: Chiltern, South Bucks, Wycombe
Berkshire: Slough, Windsor and Maidenhead,
Bracknell, Wokingham, Reading
Surrey: Surrey Heath, Runnymede,
Spellthorne, Elmbridge, Woking,
Guildford, Waverley
Oxfordshire: Oxford
Remainder of South East England: defined as the following counties excluding the Billing Authority areas forming part of the "Heathrow - M25 belt" and excluding portions of other Billing Authority areas which lie within the M25 Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Berkshire, Oxfordshire, Hertfordshire, Essex, Kent, East and West Sussex, Surrey, Hampshire, and the Bournemouth area of Dorset. 15% 7.5%
For the avoidance of doubt the Isle of Wight should be treated as outside "South East England" for the purpose of this Practice Note.
Remainder of England and Wales 10% 5%

NB

(i) It is not intended that there should be abrupt changes in the approach to site values between the above locational groupings, and shading of these percentages may need to be applied close to their boundaries.

(ii) Caseworkers should use their own discretion in deciding between “urban” and “rural” categories, but it is suggested that the sites of hereditaments situated on the fringe of build-up areas with populations not exceeding 3000 should be designated rural. While shading between the rural and urban percentages is permitted for schools sited on the urban fringe, it should only be applied where the developed land within the school hereditament falls within an area where alternative development would not be likely to be permitted.

3.5 Decapitalisation Rate

The Adjusted Replacement Cost (ARC) of the hereditament shall be decapitalised to an annual equivalent by taking the prescribed rate.

3.6 Stage 5

Any advantage or disadvantage, which might affect the value of the occupation of the hereditament as a whole should be reflected at this stage. For guidance, issues that may be pertinent to consider at this stage are (this list is for guidance only and is not exhaustive)

Upto Max.

Poor or Inflexible Layout which cause operational difficulties. 5.0%

Inadequate Staff Room / Meeting Room Facilities 2.5%

Inadequate Toilet Facilities. (ie Staff 1.25% & Public 1.25%) 2.5%

No on site parking nor public car-parking close by. 7.5%

(Applies to Branch Libraries Only)

A reduction should also be given at Stage 5 of £7.49 RV psm of the ‘foot print’ area of felted flat roofed buildings, and in the case of flat roofed buildings with other coverings, £3.76 RV psm of the foot print of the flat roof. This does not apply to System Built or Portable Buildings.

Any adjustment made at Stage 5 should not duplicate adjustments made elsewhere, in particular care should be taken that any allowance for layout does not duplicate an allowance for multi-storey where already given.

Where allowances are appropriate it is expected that they should not normally exceed 15%. Furthermore, it would be unusual for one issue in isolation will warrant the full allowance.

When taking all factors to be considered at Stage 5 into account these will not normally exceed 15% in total. However, exceptionally, where a flat roof allowance, considered by itself, amounts to 15% or more of the value resulting from Stages 1- 4, while the allowance for flat roof is capped at 15%, additional allowance may be given for other stage 5 factors, provided that the total aggregate allowance for all stage 5 factors should not normally exceed 20%.

3.7 Vacant Libraries

Where a Library is vacant at AVD due to a lack of demand, and there is no prospect of an alternative use within the same mode or category of occupation, the hereditament should be shown in the list at an RV of £1.

Where post AVD there is an MCC which results in the closure of the library, such as opening of a new library close by or demolition/decanting of a large area of housing close by, then this may be reflected at the appropriate date

4. IT Support

Where the Contractors basis is appropriate the standard generic Contractors Spreadsheet should be used. A master copy of which is located in the R-Drive. All such valuations will be downloaded into the new non-bulk server see IA’s 100903 & 140503 for further details