The amount of rates that a business has to pay is worked out by multiplying the rateable value of the property by the rating multiplier figure and applying any transitional relief or other reductions that may apply.

These calculations will be shown on the bill. There is a brief explanation of rateable value, rating multiplier and transitional relief below. There are also various other ways of reducing the bill and these are detailed on the Reductions page.

Please note, The Valuation Office Agency (VOA) will no longer provide estimates of Rateable Value to ratepayers.

If you require an estimate please visit the VOA website to look for a comparable assessment or alternatively you can seek professional advice

Rateable value

The Valuation Office Agency, which is part of the Inland Revenue, sets the rateable value of a property. The rateable value is shown on the front of the bill. The figure broadly represents the yearly rent that a property could have been let for in the open market on a particular date.  For the revaluation that came into effect on 1 April 2023, this date was 1 April 2021.  You can find more information on how rateable value is calculated by visiting the Valuation Office Agency website.

The valuation officer may alter the value if the circumstances of the property have changed.  If you think this applies to you contact the Valuation Office Agency.

If you think the rateable value of your property is wrong, you can appeal to the valuation office agency. For further information about appeals you can visit the Valuation Office Agency website, the Valuation Tribunal Service website or the Appeals and Advice page.

Rating multiplier

The rating multiplier is a figure set by the Government each year.  This is normally changed each year in line with inflation.

From 1 April 2010 there are two multipliers; the standard multiplier and the small business rates multiplier. The amount of the multipliers is shown on the front of the bill.  More information on multipliers and Small Business Rates Relief can be found at the Directgov website.

Transitional relief

The transitional relief scheme was introduced by the government as a method of phasing in the effect of the 5 yearly revaluation of rateable values by limiting the increases or decreases in business rates bills. The limits apply until the full amount is due (rateable value times the appropriate multiplier).

The scheme applies only to the bill based on a property at the time of the revaluation.  If there are any changes to the property after revaluation, transitional arrangements will not normally apply to the part of a bill that relates to an increase in rateable value due to those changes.

You do not need to apply for transitional relief. If you qualify, it will be automatically awarded, when we calculate your bill.

You can find more information about transitional relief, including examples of how it works, by visiting the Directgov website. Further information about ways to reduce your bill can be found on the Reductions page.