What are business rates, how are they calculated and where does the money go?

What are Business Rates?

Up until March 2013, the income from all Non-Domestic Rates was paid into a national pool and redistributed by the government to councils in proportion to the adult population.

From April 2013, along with all other local authorities, Brighton & Hove City Council received less government grant, but kept about half of the Business Rates collected locally, aimed by government to provide a financial incentive to improve the local economy. The remainder goes to central government for re-allocation to local authorities through various grants. Central government will continue to set the amount of rates you must pay each year. We are keen to support small business and the local economy as much as possible. In support of the local economy we offer the following; 

  1. A flexible payment option and allow monthly instalments to be spread over 12 months of the year.
  2. discretionary rate relief scheme to help charities and not-for-profit organisations.

Business rates help to fund the services that the council provides. Of direct benefit to businesses is the promotion of the city as a conference and recreational venue; roads and transport infrastructure; the police and the fire brigade. Others, such as education and housing, are indirect but are still of real benefit.

The rates are the way the users of non-domestic property contribute towards the cost of providing these essential services.


How do you calculate my business rates?

To estimate your business rates, you’ll need to multiply the rateable value for your business with a ‘multiplier’ set by the government. A multiplier is the number of pence per pound of rateable value that you’ll have to pay in business rates, before any relief or discounts are deducted. Multipliers are reviewed every year in line with inflation.

  1. Search by postcode to find the rateable value of your business.
  2. Find the correct multiplier for your size of business and location. The Multipliers for 2016/17 are Standard 49.7 & Small business 48.4. To qualify for the small business multiplier your rateable value must be under £18,000.
  3. Multiply your rateable value by the correct multiplier. This shows you how much you will have to pay in business rates (before any relief is deducted).
  4. Take away any business rate relief that you’re entitled to.

The Multipliers for 2016/17 are Standard 49.7 & Small business 48.4.


Barbara has a business in England. The rateable value of her business is £10,000, so she uses the 2016 to 2017 small business multiplier for England (48.4p) to estimate her business rates as follows:

£10,000 (rateable value) x £0.484p (multiplier) = £4840 (basic business rates). She may also be eligible for small business rate relief as her rateable value is less than £12,000.


Where does my money go?

The money is added to the council tax to provide services for the residents of the Local Authorities area.

Refuse collection and disposal

The council only collects and disposes of household waste.

  • Business Rates does not finance the collection or disposal of any waste generated in the course of a business.
  • Traders and businesses are legally required under the Environmental Protection Act (duty of care regulations) to securely store their waste and employ a licensed waste contractor to remove and dispose of their waste to an appropriate disposal point.

Failure to comply with these regulations can result in unlimited fines.  If you require more information please contact the council's Refuse and Street Cleansing Helpline on Brighton 01273 274674 or 292929.


More information - Business rates information for Brighton & Hove