Advice for businesses
Following the Spring budget announcement, see which funds will be availble to your business.
You can also see what we're doing to help businesses affected by flooding after the recent floods.
We're responsible for the collection of business rates (also known as National Non-Domestic Rates, or NNDR), a tax payable at 'non-domestic properties' to contribute towards the cost of local services.
You'll have to pay business rates if you own, lease or occupy a building or part of a building for non-domestic purposes, such as a:
- public house
We'll send you a bill for the coming tax year in February or March, each year. If the charge changes part way through the year, for any reason, we'll send you a revised bill.
How your business rates are worked out
The Valuation Office Agency (VOA) sets the rateable value on which your business rates are based. This value represents the rent the property could have been let for on a certain date set in law. Read more about rateable value and how business properties are valued (GOV.UK). Central government makes national rules about business rates. They also set the business rates multiplier figures, effective from 1 April every year.
Your business rates bill is calculated by us, we're responsible for:
- calculating charges
- issuing bills
- collecting payments
To calculate your business rates bill we multiply the rateable value of the property by the business rates multiplier figure. There are 2 multipliers:
- the standard non-domestic rating multiplier
- the small business non-domestic rating multiplier
The standard multiplier is higher in order to cover the costs of small business rate relief.
Get an estimate of your business rates and see the current multiplier by using the business rates estimator tool (GOV.UK).
The estimator tool only provides an approximate figure. Your exact rates will be shown on your bill.
Changes that affect your business rates
The rateable value may change significant changes are made to your property, such as:
- building work
- demolishing an extension
- significant external refurbishment
You must report changes to the VOA or to us immediately.
Business rates revaluation
There's usually a revaluation to the rateable values of non-domestic properties every 5 years. The last one was 1 April 2015 effective from 1 April 2017. We'll make changes to your bill if a revaluation affects your bill.
The multipliers are reviewed every year but cannot increase or decrease more than inflation except in a revaluation year.
The transitional relief scheme helps to reduce the impact of any large increase or decrease in charges due to revaluations. It applies to charges based on the property at the time of the revaluation.
The next revaluations are planned for 2021 and 2024.
Appealing your rateable value
Appeals against rateable values are free of charge.
A new way to review your rating assessment was brought in on 1 April 2017. As the owner or business rates payer, you can check and challenge the rateable value of your property.
- check your business rates valuation (GOV.UK)
- how to check and challenge your rateable value (GOV.UK)
If you have reason to believe that your 2017 rateable value is incorrect, you'll need to do the following:
- Check: review and confirm the facts about your property held by the VOA
- Challenge: once the facts are established, explain why you believe your valuation is wrong
If you’re still not satisfied following a challenge, you can appeal to the VOA.
An appeal on your 2017 rateable value is not possible until you have followed the Check and Challenge process.
You don't have to be represented in discussions about the rateable value of your property or your business rates bill.
However, if you want to be represented you may wish to contact one of the following organisations:
They can put you in touch with someone who is qualified and regulated by rules of professional conduct designed to protect the public.