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About business rates bills

The amount of business rates payable on a property is calculated by multiplying the rateable value of the property by the appropriate rating multiplier.

Rateable value of your property

Apart from properties that are exempt from business rates, each non-domestic property has a rateable value which is normally set by the valuation officers of the Valuation Office Agency (VOA), an agency of HM Revenues and Customs. It draws up and maintains a full list of all rateable values. For more information, please visit the VOA website.

The rateable value of your property is shown on the front of your bill and broadly represents the yearly rent the property could have been let for on the open market on a particular date. For the revaluation that has effect from 1 April 2017, this date is set as 1 April 2015. The valuation officer may alter the value if the circumstances of the property have changed.

The ratepayer (and certain others who have an interest in the property) can also appeal against the value shown in the list if they believe it is wrong.

More detail about how to check or challenge your valuation is available on the VOA website.

Rating advisers

Ratepayers do not have to be represented in discussions about their rateable value or their rates bill. Appeals against rateable values can be made free of charge.

However, ratepayers who do wish to be represented should be aware that members of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) and the Institute of Revenues Rating and Valuation (IRRV) are qualified and are regulated by rules of professional conduct designed to protect the public from misconduct.

Before you employ a rating adviser, you should check that they have the necessary knowledge and expertise, as well as appropriate indemnity insurance. Take great care and, if necessary, seek further advice before entering into any contract.

Revaluations

All rateable values are reassessed at revaluations. The most recent revaluation took effect from 1 April 2017. Revaluations ensure that business rates bills more accurately reflect current rental values and relative changes in rents. Frequent revaluations ensure the system continues to respond to changing economic conditions.

Transitional arrangements

At a revaluation, some ratepayers will see their bill go down or stay the same, but some ratepayers will have increases.

Transitional schemes are introduced at each revaluation to help those facing increases. The relief is funded by limiting the reduction in bills for those who benefit from the revaluation. Transitional relief is automatically applied to bills.

National non-domestic rating multiplier

The normal multiplier for 2020-2021 is 51.2p 
The small business multiplier for 2020-2021 is 49.9p