Frequently asked questions about business rates

Answers to questions about Business Rates can be found here

Roles and responsibilities?
The Valuation Office Agency (VOA) sets the rateable value of business premises by using property details such as rental information.  We use the rateable value and the business rates multiplier (set by central government) to calculate your business rates bill.

What is the Rateable Value?
The rateable value is assessed by the Valuation Office Agency (VOH), 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

If you think your rateable value is incorrect, you can find and check your property details on Gov.uk.

What is a revaluation?
The VOA 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.

How can I find out more?
You can find more information on the 2017 revaluation, rateable values, and how your business rates are calculated on Gov.uk  
You can also estimate your business rates bill, including any small business rate relief the local council may apply.

Why is the rateable value different to my rent?
The VOA look at many rents in an area before deciding on the right rateable value for each property. Rents can vary between properties in an area, even if the properties are similar and the rents are agreed at the same time. This is because landlords and tenants often have different views on the rental value of a property and sometimes there are special lease terms that can affect the rent paid.

How do I find out the rent/trade details held for my property?
The VOA does not publish this information online, as that would breach the Data Protection Act.

Please call 03000 501 501 to request the details from the VOA.

My business has closed, how so I have the property taken out of the Rating List?
The VOA doesn't remove properties from the Rating List just because the business has closed. It is more than likely that if the property still exists it may still be rateable. 

Please also contact us to advise us the details.

I have a property that is in poor repair or undergoing refurbishment or structural alterations.
Please find more information on Gov.uk to help you consider whether to make a proposal – depending on state of disrepair.

What do i do if i believe my property's measurements are wrong?
Please visit Gov.uk to look up your property by postcode and send in suggested amendments to the measurements.

How do I appeal/challenge the draft 2017 rateable value?
Once the new rateable values come into effect on 1 April 2017, you will be able to make a formal challenge. Information can be found on Gov.uk about the appeals process including the reforms the Government has proposed.

Should I be paying business rates if my business is run from home?
You don’t usually have to pay business rates for home-based businesses if you:

  • use a small part of your home for your business, e.g. you use a bedroom as an office
  • sell goods by post.

More information on rates for businesses run from home