Find out how business rates are worked out and how to appeal if you think your rateable value is wrong or has changed.

We work out business rates each year by taking a propertys rateable value and multiplying it by the multiplier set by the government each year.

What rateable value means

All properties which are not homes have a rateable value, as a way of measuring how valuable each property is.

Your premises are given a rateable value by the Valuation Office Agency (VOA), who are part of HM Revenues and Customs. Which we use to calculate how much you should pay.

At revaluation, the VOA adjusts the rateable value of business properties to reflect changes in the property market.

Rateable values are usually revised every five years. The current rateable values are based on the 1 April 2021 valuation, coming into effect 1 April 2023.

Future revaluations will take place on a 3 year valuation cycle with the next Valuation List due to start on 1 April 2026.

Find out more about the 2023 business rates revaluation.

The VOA bases most rateable values on an estimate of what it would cost to rent a property for a year, starting on a certain date.

For the 2023 valuation, that date was 1 April 2021. This was during the pandemic and the rent information the VOA used reflected this.

The VOA gathers as much evidence as possible about actual rents paid for properties so that they can set appropriate rental values.

A regular reassessment helps maintain fairness in the rating system by redistributing the total amount payable in business rates, reflecting changes in the property market.

How the multiplier works

The rateable value is multiplied by the appropriate multiplier to work out the rates payable, before any relief is applied.  The multipliers are set each financial year by the government.

In 2023 the multiplier for premises over £51,000 rateable value is 51.2p. If your rateable value is £100,000, we'd multiply this by 51.2p and your bill for the year will be £51,200.

The multiplier, in most circumstances, for premises under £51,000 rateable value is 49.9p. If your rateable value is £40,000, we'd multiply this by 49.9p and your bill for the year will be £19,960.

Each year on 1 April the multiplier is changed by the government depending on the level of inflation.

How rateable value can change

The rateable value of a property may be changed for a number of reasons:

  • your premises may alter in size as a result of an extension or other alteration
  • the use of your premises may change 
  • you may appeal against the assessment after a revaluation
  • you may combine your premises with next door or you may split it into two or more units

If you believe that your rateable value is too high or need to change the assessment of your property, you must contact the VOA Go to (opens new window).

Find your rateable value

You can view the rateable value for your property and get an estimate of what your 2023/24 business rates bill may be.

You can do this through the VOA's find a business rates valuation service on GOV.UK.

Change your property details

To tell the VOA about changes to your property details, such as floor area sizes and parking, you need a business rates valuation account.

The VOA may accept your changes and update the current and future valuations.

Appeal your rateable value

If you think your future rateable value starting from 1 April 2023 is too high, you can check and challenge your business rates valuation.

You must continue to make payments of your business rates as normal in the meantime. If you do overpay, we will refund you.

Appeals are not being accepted for the 2017 Rating List.

Before making an appeal, you can contact the VOA to discuss your rateable value and why you wish to appeal it. They may be able to resolve your query by initially contacting them.

To contact the VOA:

Transitional relief

Transitional relief, if applicable, limits how much your business rates bill can increase or decrease each year as a result of a revaluation, so that changes to your bill are phased in gradually.

How much your bill can change by from one year to the next depends on both:

  • your property's rateable value
  • if your bill is increasing or decreasing as a result of a revaluation

From the 1 April 2023 Transitional Relief will only apply where there's an increase in a rateable value.

If the rateable value is decreasing, the business will benefit from the full reduction straightaway from 1 April 2023.

The Transitional Relief cap increases each year depending on the rateable value band applicable. This cap is applied before any other reliefs and exemptions.

If your bill is increasing from 1 April 2023 Transitional relief will be calculated as follows:

 Rateable value 2023 to 2024 2024 to 2025 2025 to 2026
 Up to £20,000 (£28,000 in London)  5%  10% plus inflation  25% plus inflation
 £20,001 (£28,001 in London) to £100,000  15%  15% plus inflation  40% plus inflation
 Over £100,000  30%  30% plus inflation  55% plus inflation