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Business rates frequently asked questions

This provides answers to some frequently asked questions about business rates.

Q. How is my rateable value calculated?

A. Your rateable value represents the annual rental charge for the business premises subject to assessment. If there is evidence of rental levels available this will normally be used as the basis for the calculation.

In cases where rental evidence is not available, recent accounts can be used to enable the assessment to be calculated with reference to profitability of the business. If you wish to appeal against the rateable value you need to do this through the valuation office. Please see our rateable values page for further information.

Q. Can I appeal against the charge?

A. If we have charged you incorrectly then please contact us immediately. If you think the Rateable Value is incorrect then please contact the Valuation Office Agency using the details shown below. Until the amount has been agreed you have to pay the amount requested.

The contact details are:

Valuation Office Agency
Queensgate House
12 Silver Street

Tel 03000 501501

See the link on the right for the Government's website where you can check your valuation.

Q. Do I have to pay even if my property is empty and not being used?

A. All empty properties qualify for full relief for the first 3 months or in some cases 6 months whilst they are empty. After 3 or 6 months the majority of empty properties are chargeable at the full rate. However, some properties qualify for a full exemption, for example with listed buildings. Please contact us for further information about exemptions.

Q. If I am having difficulty paying the charges what should I do?

A. Contact us immediately. We may be able to help you and prevent further recovery action being taken with additional costs being incurred.