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How we work with local authorities - business rates

Posted by: , Posted on: - Categories: Business Rates, Local authorities

The Valuation Office Agency (VOA) is responsible for valuing non-domestic properties for business rates. We value 2.1 million commercial properties, like shops, offices and pubs, across England and Wales.

Our valuations are used by councils to calculate business rates bills.

In this blog, we look at role of the VOA and local councils in the administration of business rates.

Read our previous blog for information about Council Tax.

Your property’s rateable value

The VOA calculates your property’s rateable value. This is the open market annual rental value your property could have been let for at a certain date.

We work out the rateable value of a property using 3 main methods:

  • rental comparison
  • receipts and expenditure
  • contractor’s basis

Learn more about how we value properties.

A property’s rateable value is not the same as its business rates bill. Local councils use the rateable value to calculate the business rates bill.

Business rates bills

Your local council works out your business rates bill by multiplying the rateable value by a ‘multiplier’ then applying any rates relief.

For example, in England, if an individual’s property had a rateable value of £10,000, the council would work out their business rates this way:

£10,000 (rateable value) x 49.9 pence (multiplier) = £4,990 (basic business rates)

In this example, the 2023 to 2024 small business multiplier is 49.9 pence. The multiplier depends on your rateable value.

Your local council also sends you your bill.

How we can help

The VOA can help with any questions you have about your rateable value.

Use our find a business rates valuation service to find your property’s rateable value, compare it with similar properties and check how it was calculated.

If you want to report a change to your property or challenge its rateable value, you can do this through your business rates valuation account.

We may also ask you to submit details of your rent and lease arrangements.

When to contact your local council

Your council deals with your business rates bill. Any questions about your bill, including how and when to pay, should be directed to them.

Your council will also be able to tell you about any reliefs you are eligible for, such as small business rate relief.

To find your local council, visit GOV.UK.

We welcome your comments about this blog below but cannot discuss individual cases. Please do not share any personal information. We will not be able to publish any comments that include personal details.

Please direct all queries about individual cases to our contact form.

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  1. Comment by Laura regazzacci posted on

    Having read all this I still do not understand how to get a new business rates valuation for a property that was paying council tax but is now being let short term holiday letting. It’s really difficult to understand how to do this. The council will not help me and the VOA hasn’t got a link for new properties.


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