Small business rate relief (SBRR)

Small business rate relief is a national discount scheme administered by the council on behalf of the Government. It is awarded on a sliding scale depending on the size of your Rateable Value (RV).

The maximum amount of discount is 100%. This means you may be able to reduce your bill to nothing, depending on your Rateable Value (RV). 

2010 Scheme (1 April 2010 to 31 March 2017)

In the 2010 rating list, properties with rateable values of £6,000 and below, received 100% relief (50% relief from 1 April 2010 to 30 September 2010, 100% from 1 October 2010 to 31 March 2017), with a sliding scale discount on occupied properties from £6,001 to £11,999.

The cut off date for application for this relief is 30 September 2017.  

2017 Scheme (1 April 2017 onwards)

The Government announced in the 2016 Spring budget that the thresholds will increase to benefit a greater number of businesses. 

Businesses with a property with a rateable value of £12,000 and below will receive 100% relief. Businesses with a property with a rateable value between £12,001 and £14,999 will receive tapered relief. However, please note that the Valuation Office Agency have re-assessed all rateable values, with the revaluation taking effect 1 April 2017.

Further information on rateable values can be found at The Valuation Office Agency.

How much reduction will I get?

• if the rateable value is £12,000 or less, you will get a 100% discount;

• if the rateable value is between £12,0001 and £14,999, the discount is calculated on a sliding scale. For example, you will get a 50% discount if your rateable value is £13,500 
• If your rateable value is £15,000 or over, no Small Business Rate Relief can be awarded.

Do I qualify?

To qualify for relief, you must occupy either:

• one property with a rateable value of less than £15,000 or
• one main property and other additional properties providing the additional properties each have a rateable value below £2,900, and the total rateable value of all your properties is below £20,000

• there were changes to Small Business Rate Relief in 2014 for those who are occupying a second property on or after 14 February 2014. In previous years, if you took on a second property with a rateable value of more than £2,599, you would no longer qualify for Small Business Rate Relief. From 14 February 2014 ratepayers continued to receive Small Business Rate Relief on the first property for 12 months, even when taking on a second one. From 1 April 2017 this threshold rises to £2,899.

• When applying for SBRR please note this reduction can only be applied to one account.

• Relief is only applicable to occupied properties where the ratepayer is not entitled to mandatory relief as a charity.

Change in circumstance

If you occupy another property after SBRR is applied on an existing property, you should notify the council to see if relief can still be awarded;

• Where the rateable value of any other property or properties you occupy increases above £2,900 and collectively above £20,000

• The property becomes unoccupied.

How to apply

If you wish to apply for small business rate relief, please fill in our online SBRR form. 

A form is available to download or alternatively phone the Business Rates team on 01273 291981 between 8.30am and 5.00pm Monday to Friday.

Can SBRR be backdated?

Yes, relief can be backdated as far back as 1st April 2010, providing you have met the qualifying criteria throughout. The deadline for backdating relief under the 2010 scheme is 30 September 2017.

Further changes from 1 April 2017

You’ll pay the small business multiplier if your property has a rateable value below £51,000. 

Important information

  • Empty properties do not qualify for SBRR.
  • Ratepayers in receipt of mandatory charity relief do not qualify for SBRR.
  • You must notify us within 28 days of any changes in your circumstances that may affect your entitlement to relief; e.g if you become liable for an additional property or extend your current premises.
  • If you make a false declaration you can be fined, imprisoned or both.