Business rates help to pay for the services we provide, such as education, refuse collection and street lighting.
Business rates is a local tax that is paid by the occupiers of all non-domestic/business properties, in the same way that council tax is a tax on domestic property. Business rates are charged on most business properties such as shops, offices, pubs, warehouses and factories. However, the property doesn't have to be used for a business - if it's used for purposes which are not domestic it's likely to be rateable.
If you've been billed for business rates and don't think you're the person responsible for paying the bill please get in touch.
How business rates are calculated
Business rates are calculated by multiplying the rateable value (set by HMRC), of your business property and the business rates multiplier (set by government).
From 1 April 2017, the rateable value of your property will be based on the valuation date of 1 April 2015. This means you could see a rise in your business rates bill.
If your business rates bill if has gone up following revaluation, it’ll gradually increase year on year until the full amount is paid. If the bill has gone down, it’ll gradually reduce over time.
The rateable value of a property is assessed by the Valuation Office Agency (VOA). It's usually an assessment of the annual rent of the property, if it were available to let on the open market at a fixed valuation date.
The VOA regularly reassess and update the rateable values of all business properties usually every 5 years. This is called a Revaluation and is done to maintain fairness in the system by redistributing the total amount payable in business rates, reflecting changes in the property market.
Find and correct your property details if you think your rateable value is incorrect.
Business rates multiplier
The business rates multiplier is set by central government. It is the number of pence per pound of rateable value that you’ll have to pay in business rates, before any relief or discounts are deducted. The business rates multipliers for 2017/18 are:
- 46.6p for small business
- 47.9p for other businesses
Multipliers are reviewed every year.
Business rates 2017-2018
More information on how we spend your money can be found in Business rates 2017 - 2018 (370kb pdf).