What's new in business rates?

  • What's new in business rates?

This page gives an overview of the changes planned to the business rates scheme.

We will update this page as and when more information becomes available.

Changes to business rates announced in the March 2017 Budget

The chancellor has announced some changes to business rates from 1 April 2017 which will provide further support for businesses facing significant increases in bills following the 2017 revaluation. We have not yet implemented these changes and they will not show on your 2017/18 business rates bill.

The following changes were announced:

  • support for small businesses losing small business rate relief to limit increases in their bills
  • funding will be given to local authorities to provide support to individual hard cases in our local area
  • the introduction of a £1,000 business rate discount for public houses with a rateable value of up to £100,000, subject to state aid limits for businesses with multiple properties, for one year from 1 April 2017.

If you are eligible for the business rate discount for public houses, or additional support following the loss of small business rate relief, we will send you a new business rates bill once this has been applied to your account. This will be after June 2017 and you should continue to pay your business rates bill in the meantime. 

We will publish further details on the additional help available to businesses following the revaluation as they become available.

Revaluation 2017

The Valuation Office Agency (VOA) is updating the rateable value of all business properties.

Your rateable value is used to work out the amount you pay in business rates.

The VOA regularly reassess and update the rateable values of all business properties usually every five years. This is called a Revaluation. This is done to maintain fairness in the system by redistributing the total amount payable in business rates, reflecting changes in the property market. Revaluation does not raise extra revenue overall.

The revaluation came into effect on 1 April 2017.

If you have reason to believe that your 2017 rateable value is not correct, You will need to do the following:

An appeal on your 2017 rateable value is not possible, and may not be necessary, until you have completed check and challenge.

Find out more about the 2017 revaluation on GOV.UK

Changes to small business rate relief from 1 April 2017

The government has confirmed changes to small business rate relief from April 2017.

Small business rate relief will be permanently doubled from 50 per cent to 100 per cent and the thresholds have increased to benefit a greater number of businesses. From April 2017:

  • businesses with a property with a rateable value of £12,000 and below will receive 100 per cent relief
  • businesses with a property with a rateable value between £12,000 and £15,000 will receive relief on a sliding scale
  • the threshold for the standard business rates multiplier will increase to a rateable value of £51,000, taking 250,000 smaller properties out of the higher rate.

Appeals process

The government has introduced a new appeals process for business rates from April 2017.

Newspaper relief

From 1 April 2017 a new, £1,500 a year relief has been introduced for office space occupied by local newspapers. This is restricted to one award of relief per local newspaper title, per property, and will be for two years. This relief is subject to state aid limits.

Rural rate relief

Rural rate relief has been permanently doubled from 50 per cent to 100 per cent for qualifying properties. 


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