Who pays Business rates?

Occupied Property

The occupier of any non-domestic assessment is responsible for paying the Business rates. 

Empty Property

Empty properties with a rateable value of less than £18,000 were exempt from Business rates from 1 April 2010 to 31 March 2011.  The rateable value threshold for empty property exemptions was decreased to £2,600 from 1 April 2011. Also property owned by a charity or Community Amateur Sports Club (CASC) whose intention it is to use the property for those purposes.

Business rates will not be payable in the first three months that the property is empty. This is extended to six months in the case of certain industrial properties.*

*The Government introduced a temporary measure for unoccupied new builds from October 2013. Unoccupied newly built commercial properties will be exempt from unoccupied property rates for up to 18 months (up to state aid limits). This means where the property comes on to the rating list between 1 October 2013 and 30 September 2016. The 18-month period includes the initial three or six month exemption and so properties may, if unoccupied, be exempt from non-domestic rates for up to an extra 15 or 12 months.
The relief continues beyond 1 October 2016 for those that become eligible before that date.

How are Business rates calculated?

Business rates payable on each property are based on the rateable value of that property. Rateable values are assessed at five year intervals. The Valuation Officer of the Valuation Office Agency sets the rateable value for each business property.
This rateable value is multiplied by a multiplier (expressed as a poundage) which is set by the government each year to determine the amount of business rates you have to pay.

For 2016-2017 the multiplier is £0.484p, but if your assessment does not qualify as a small business there is an additional charge of £0.013p increasing the multiplier to £0.497p. 
We then calculate whether your assessment is subject to any transitional phasing, reliefs and exemptions that you may be entitled to.

If you need information about the rateable value of your property, please contact:

The Valuation Officer
Earle House
Colonial Street
Phone: 0300 050 1501
Website: http://www.gov.uk/

Page last updated: 
8 June 2016
Was this page useful?