May elections

You must register to vote in the upcoming May elections before Wednesday 17 April. If you cannot attend the elections, you can apply for a postal vote before 5pm on Wednesday 17 April. Find all the key dates on our election news page.

 

Who has to pay business rates?

You will have to pay business rates if you use a building for some other reason than a home, for example as a shop or office.

The ratepayer is the person entitled to possession of the property.

If you pay your business rates directly to the owner (or leaseholder) and the owner does not pass on your payments to the council, you are still liable for the rates. Any private agreement between you and the owner or leaseholder is not binding in rating law. This means you might need to go to the county court to reclaim the business rates from the owner.

If you work from home, we may charge business rates for the part of the property you use for work, and you will have to pay Council Tax for the rest of the property (although your property’s valuation band may change). It will depend on your circumstances, so you should contact the Valuation Office Agency (VOA)for advice.

We work out your business rates each year by taking a property’s rateable value and multiplying it by the appropriate ‘multiplier’ set by the government each year.

Rateable value

Every non-domestic property has a rateable value unless it is exempt. Your property’s rateable value is determined by the VOA.

The VOA revaluates properties from time to time - their most recent revaluation took effect from 1 April 2023.

You can look at GOV.UK to find out how the VOA calculates rateable values for business rates.

If you disagree with your rateable value, you can check and challenge it on GOV.UK.

Multiplier

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.  

You can check the current and previous multipliers on GOV.UK.