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Small business rates relief

Guidance notes

The government introduced the Small Business Rate Relief (SBRR) scheme to ease the National Non-Domestic Rate (NNDR) burden on small business. If you think that you may qualify after reading our guidance notes, please apply for small business rates relief as soon as possible.

Before you apply: find you Rateable Value (RV)

The Rateable Value (RV) of the property that you occupy for business purposes is assessed by the Valuation Office Agency (VOA). The VOA is an agency of Her Majesty’s Revenues and Customs and is independent of the Council. Their telephone number is 03000 501501. You can check your Rateable Value on the VOA website (GOV.UK)

How is the SBRR calculated?

The amount of SBRR you receive is based on the RV of the property you occupy. Ratepayers of eligible properties which have been assessed with an RV of:

  • Of £12,000 or less (from 1st April 2017) will receive 100% relief 
  • Between £12,001 to £14,999, tapered relief will be awarded, decreasing to 0% relief for properties with an RV of £15,000 or above
  • Between £15,000 and £50,999 will not receive any SBRR, but their liability will be based on a lower non-domestic (small business) rating multiplier. This is applied automatically, and those properties assessed with RVs of £51,000 or more will pay their bills based on the higher (standard) non-domestic multiplier. The lower non-domestic rating multiplier will also be used to calculate the amount due for all properties assessed with an RV below £15,000.

Criteria for this relief

The criteria for qualifying for SBRR are as follows:

  1. The RV of the property (assessment) must be within the above thresholds
  2. The property must meet the criteria for every day for which the relief is being claimed
  3. Relief will only be awarded to ratepayers with either:
    1. Only one occupied property in England; or
    2. One main property and other additional properties in England, provided that those additional properties have RV’s of less than £2,900 each and that the total RV of all the properties added together is less than £20,000
  4. Subject to above points, if an additional property is occupied, relief on the original property may be retained for up to one year only; however, no relief will be available on the second property

What relief will I receive?

Relief will be granted to one property (assessment) only. The bill will be calculated on a daily basis as long as the qualifying criteria are met. Additional properties, as detailed above, will not attract relief and their bills will be calculated using the lower multiplier. In summary, if the ratepayer occupies more than one property, entitlement to relief is dependent on the RVs of the other properties they occupy.

Where the ratepayer occupies properties in more than one area, if the RV of a property outside the area of the council granting relief goes up, the ratepayer must notify that council of the increase. If a ratepayer is uncertain about which Council any of the properties they occupy are situated in, they should contact the Council which grants the relief.

If the ratepayer is entitled to charitable relief (80%) or rural rate relief (50%), they will not be entitled to SBRR. Any transition relief will be applied before the SBRR.

Last updated: ‎16/02/2024 15:52