Business Rates (Non-domestic rates)
Business rates is a local tax that is paid by the occupiers of all non-domestic/business property, 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 is used for purposes which are not domestic it is likely to be rateable. We will send you a business rates bill each year.
What to pay and when
We will send you a business rates bill in March each year. This is for the following tax year. You can also estimate your business rates bill.
There are a number of ways to pay, the most efficient being Direct Debit
Find out about how to pay your Business Rates.
Relief schemes and exemptions
You may be able to get business rates relief. This is sometimes automatic, but you may need to apply for other forms of relief. There are also exemptions for paying any business rates for certain types of buildings or business.
How your Business Rates are calculated
Roles and responsibilities
The Valuation Office Agency sets the rateable value of business premises by using property details such as rental information.
They use the rateable value and the business rates multiplier (set by central government) to calculate your business rates bill.
The rateable value is assessed by the Valuation Office Agency, 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 2017, the rateable values will be based on a valuation date of 1 April 2008.
- From 1 April 2017, the rateable values will be based on the valuation date of 1 April 2015.
If you think your rateable value is incorrect, you can find and view your property details on the GOV.UK website.
If you do not know your property valuation see the Valuation Office Agency website.
Requests for information
VOA may send you a request for rental information about your property so they can work out its rateable value. You can either:
- provide your rental information online
- send it by post - contact your local VOA office and ask for form VO6003, or form VO6005 if you need to send additional information
Contact the Valuation Office Agency if you need more time to send in your rental information.
The Valuation Office Agency 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.
Transitional arrangements are in place during each 5 year period so that the effects of any large increase or decrease in Business Rates are phased in.
Check, challenge and appeal
How to check, challenge and appeal your rateable value with the Valuation Office Agency
This service is designed to get changes made quickly without there being an automatic need for an appeal. Check and challenge allows you to check and confirm or update the details of your property. Following a check, if you think the valuation is wrong, you can submit a challenge or request changes. Following a challenge, if you are still not satisfied you can appeal.
- Check your rateable valuation online,
- if you think the valuation is wrong, you can challenge or request changes online, and
- if you are still not satisfied, you can appeal.
The process is free of charge. Please give clear reasons for your challenge or appeal, and include the address and postcode of any other property you are comparing yours with.
If you do not have web access please ring the VOA on: 03000 501 501 or write to the VOA at:
Check and Challenge Service
Non-Domestic Rates explained in full 2022/23
Download a print only version of the explanatory notes.