Small business rate relief

Apply for small business rate relief (SBRR) to get money off your council tax bill ('business rates') if your business property has a 'rateable value' of less than £18,000.

Those businesses which qualify:

  • will have their bills calculated using the lower 'small business multiplier'
  • may receive a 'percentage reduction' of their bill if the rateable value does not exceed £12,000
  • must tell us if you occupy an additional property
  • must notify us if the rateable value of your properties outside of our area increases
  • will not get SBRR if you're in receipt of charity/rural relief
  • will not get SBRR if the property is empty (bills will be calculated using the 'standard multiplier')
  • will not get SBRR from the increase date, if your rateable value increases above the maximum level

Small business rate relief from 1 April 2010 to 31 March 2016

For the current 2010 'Rating List' (see VAO webiste) only one application is needed to cover the periods from 1 April 2010 to 31 March 2016 (for properties with a rateable value of below £12,000).

Small business rate relief from 31 March 2016 to 31 March 2017

  • if you occupy only one business property with a rateable value of £6,000 or below you'll receive 100% relief - an application is required
  • if you occupy only one business property with a rateable value between £6,001 and £11,999 you'll receive a 'tapered level of relief' (between 100% and 0%) - an application is required
  • if you occupy more than one business property, you'll receive a 'percentage reduction' if the rateable value of each property is below £2,600, and the combined value is below £18,000 - the total is calculated from all such rateable values, and the relief applied to the main property

Proposed changes to small business rate relief from 1 April 2017

The government has announced possible changes to small business rate relief from April 2017 (next year). These changes have not been agreed yet and we will provide further information on this page when available

The proposal is to permanently double small business rate relief from 50% to 100% and increase the thresholds to benefit a greater number of businesses.  If this is agreed, it will mean that from April 2017:

  • businesses with a property with a rateable value of £12,000 and below will receive 100% relief
  • businesses with a property with a rateable value between £12,000 and £15,000 will receive relief on a sliding scale
  • the threshold for the standard business rates multiplier will increase to a rateable value of £51,000, taking 250,000 properties out of the higher rate.

Backdated small business rate relief

Currently you can apply for small business rate relief at any time during the current valuation period and for a further 6 months after the end of this period. You can also apply up to 6 months after the date the council is told about a change in the rateable value, which means the property would be eligible for relief if this is later.

This means you can still get small business rate relief backdated to 1 April 2010, although if you think you may be eligible you should apply as soon as possible in case the rules change in future.

Small business rate relief on second properties

The Government announced in its Autumn Statement in December 2013, that it will relax the SBRR rules to allow businesses in receipt of SBRR taking on an additional property to retain SBRR on the first property for 1 year, with effect from 14 February 2014.

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