Guide

Non-domestic rates guidance
Last updated: 15 November 2019

Paying non-domestic rates

Who needs to pay non-domestic rates

Businesses, charities and public sector organisations have to pay non-dometic rates.

You pay them if you're the owner, tenant or occupier of a non-domestic property. This includes:

  • shops
  • offices
  • pubs and hotels
  • warehouses
  • factories

You might also need to pay them if you use part of a house for business purposes. For example, if you work from home or let out a room.

If you're not sure if you need to pay business rates on your property, contact your local assessor.

If you're renting a property, you should check the terms of your lease to see if you're responsible for paying business rates.

Who doesn't need to pay

Some types of premises are exempt from business rates. This includes:

  • agricultural land and buildings
  • fish farms
  • public parks
  • rural premises with Automatic Telling Machines (ATMs)
  • oil and gas pipelines
  • overseas armed forces premises in the UK

This list is not exhaustive and your local assessor will be able to tell you if your property is exempt.

How to pay

You pay business rates to your local council.

When you start a new business or move into new business premises, you should tell your local council and they'll send you a rates bill.

Your council will normally send you a business rates bill in February or March each year. This is for the period 1 April to 31 March the following year.

You can pay business rates as a lump sum or by instalments. And you can pay them:

  • by Direct Debit
  • online
  • by debit or credit card
  • by bank transfer or standing order

If you think that your bill is wrong or that you are entitled to a relief, you should contact your local council.

Your business rates bill does not include charges such as rent and business leases, water charges or other costs.