How are business rates calculated?

Who assesses the rateable value?

When are Business Rates payable?

Frequently Asked Questions

What are Business Rates?

What is Rateable Value?

Who is  liable to pay Business Rates?

Are there concessions, reliefs or exemptions available on business rates?

Q. How are business rates calculated?

A. Business rates are calculated by multiplying rateable value of property by the Uniform Business Rate (UBR) which is set by Government  and  valued every five years by the Valuation Office Agency (VOA).

Q. What are Business Rates?

A. Business rates is the commonly used name of non-domestic rates, a tax on the occupation of non-domestic property.




Q. When are Business Rates payable?

A.  You should receive a bill each March showing how much you have to pay for the coming year. You can check the rateable value of your property at any time on the VOA website. You can opt to pay in 10 monthly instalments.


It is important that you keep up with your business rate payments. Failure to do so will result in financial penalties and possibly court action. If you are having difficulty paying your business rates, you should contact your council as soon as possible. If we were successful in saving you money after a court judgement has been issued, you would not be entitled to any interest on your refund.


Q. Who is liable to pay business rates?


A. If you occupy or own a non-domestic premises, you are likely to have to pay business rates. Non-domestic, or business properties, includes office space, warehouses, shops and pubs etc. Some buildings and areas, such as public parks or places of public worship, do not count as business premises and are therefore exempt from business rates.

Q. What is Rateable Value?

A. The Rateable Value (RV) represents the hypothetical rental value of a property on the  Antecedent Valuation Date (AVD). Broadly peaking it is determined by factors such as size and use of the property. However, there are additional determining factors relating to the property which may affect its value.

Q. Who assesses the rateable value?

A. The Valuation Office Agency department of the Inland Revenue assesses the rateable value of all relevant properties in England and Wales. Every 5 years the valuation office publishes a new rating list for each billing authority, which shows the rateable values of all properties in its area. They then collect the revenue based on their calculations.

Q. Are there concessions, reliefs or exemptions available on business rates?


A. With effect from the 1st April 2005 Central Government introduced the Small Business Rate Relief (SBRR). If you believe you may be entitled to SBRR you should contact your local billing authority.


If a property is empty and unused no business rates are normally payable for the first 3 months (6 months if the property meets the criteria for being classed as industrial). After this period has elapsed a charge at 100% of the rate is made. Some types of business    property are exempt from empty property rates.


Relief for partly occupied properties may be awarded where a property is only partly occupied where both the occupied part and the unoccupied part are in the possession of the same person or company. It is the discretion of the local authority to award partly occupied  relief on the empty part.


Examples of property that are exempt from empty property rates include; Properties where occupation is prohibited by law; Properties where there is an action to prohibit occupation or acquire; Where rateable value is below the minimum rateable value, Where the owner is entitled to possession only in his capacity as the personal representative of a deceased person; Insolvency and debt administration.



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