Business rates are also known as National Non-Domestic Rates (NNDR) 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.
The Valuation Office Agency (VOA) which is an agency of HM Revenue and Customs, sets the Rateable Value of business premises by using property details such as rental information.
The 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.
We use the Rateable Value, but this is not the amount you will pay in Business Rates, it is the basis for calculation of your Business Rates bill. We will calculate your bill by multiplying your Rateable Value by a factor set by central Government each year, this is known as the "multiplier".
The two multipliers for 2016/2017 are 49.7p (0.497) for the standard multiplier and 48.4p (0.484) for the small business multiplier. We then apply any rate relief or other adjustments you are due and will send you a Business Rates bill each year.
The VOA regularly reassess and update the Rateable Values of all business properties, this is called a Revaluation and usually occurs every five years, although the last revaluation took place in 2010. Revaluations are 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.
You can check your draft Rateable Value from 30 September 2016 and if necessary let the VOA know if any information is incorrect, before we use it to calculate your bill.
For more information on the 2017 Revaluation, Rateable Values, and Business Rates go to www.gov.uk/voa/revaluation . You can also estimate your Business Rates bill, including any entitlement to small business rate relief.
Register your email address here to receive an email from the VOA to let you know that the draft valuation list is now online.
You can pay your business rates in several ways and in the paying your business rates section you can see what they are, what you should do if you are having problems paying your rates and how you can see your bills online.
In some circumstances, you may not need to pay the full amount of business rates and some properties may be exempt. You can find out about these different discounts and exemptions on the reliefs and exemptions webpage.
Find out how your business rates are calculated and how you may be affected by the transition scheme on the business rates calculation section.
If you move into or out of business premises, you must provide us with specific information. In the change of circumstances section, you can see what information we need from you and when.
For more information, contact our business rates team on 01329 824651 or e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org