Business rates are charged on most non-domestic properties and helps pay for local services.
We act as the collection agent for the Government. The money is partly pooled at central government level and redistributed, and partly retained locally.
You’ll probably have to pay business rates if you use a building or part of a building for non-domestic purposes. These include:
- holiday rental homes or guest houses
We work out your business rates bill by multiplying the rateable value of the property by one of two multipliers: standard and small business. The first is higher to pay for small business rate relief. The Government sets the multipliers for each financial year.
There are various reliefs available to a ratepayer, depending on their circumstances.
Payment of business rates bills are automatically set on a ten-monthly cycle. But you can now pay in 12 monthly instalments. To take up this offer, contact us as soon as possible.
All non-domestic properties are generally revalued every five years by the Valuation Office Agency (VOA). The last revaluation took effect from 1 April 2017. The next revaluation is effective from 1 April 2023.
What is the rateable value?
The rateable value is assessed by VOA, which is an agency of HM Revenue and Customs. A property's rateable value is an assessment of the annual rent the property would rent for if it were available to let on the open market at a fixed valuation date.
- until 31 March 2023, the rateable values will be based on a valuation date of 1 April 2015
- from 1 April 2023, the rateable values will be based on the valuation date of 1 April 2021
If you think your rateable value is incorrect, you can find and view your property details on the GOV.UK website.
What is a revaluation?
The VOA regularly reassess and update the rateable values of all business properties, usually every five years. This is called a revaluation. This is done to maintain fairness in the system by redistributing the total amount payable in business rates, reflecting changes in the property market. Revaluation does not raise extra revenue overall.
How do I appeal against my rateable value?
You can only make a formal appeal against your 2023 rateable value once it comes into effect on 1 April 2023. You can find out more about the appeals process, including the reforms the Government has proposed on the GOV.UK website.
Your rateable value may change if any physical changes are made to your property, for example, building or demolishing an extension. The Council has a duty to notify the VOA of any newly built, extended, demolished or otherwise altered non-domestic properties that come to our attention. You should notify the business rates team of any changes as soon as they happen.
You may appeal against the rateable value of your property if you think it is incorrect. This might be due to a material change in the property's circumstances, for example:
- a change in its physical state or use
- a physical change in the locality
- a change in the use of a neighbouring property
An appeal to the VOA against a rateable value begins with a proposal to alter the rating list. Before making an appeal, you can contact the VOA to discuss your rateable value and why you want to appeal against it. They may be able to resolve things without you needing to follow the formal procedure.
There are limits on the backdating of appeals. Any alteration made by the VOA on or after 1 April 2024 can only be backdated to 1 April 2023.
Having an outstanding appeal against your rateable value is not accepted by Magistrates' Courts as grounds for withholding payment so you should continue to make payments on your current bill until you receive a revised bill. Any overpaid rates will be refunded if your appeal is successful.
To view the current rating list or to make an appeal against an entry in the list, you can contact the VOA Office by calling 03000 501 501.
For more information visit the Valuation Tribunal website.