Business rates relief for small businesses
Last Updated: 6 November 2023
Business rates relief for small businesses from 1 April 2017
The property must meet the criteria on every day that relief is being applied for.
The property must have a rateable value within the thresholds below.
The relief is only available to ratepayers who occupy either:
- only one non-domestic property in England
- one main property and other additional properties providing the additional properties have a rateable value which does not exceed £2,899
Small Business Rate Relief is not available to ratepayers who are receiving either Mandatory Rural Rate Relief or Mandatory Charitable Relief.
The amount of Small Business Rate Relief awarded depends on the rateable value of your property. Following the 2017 revaluation, the Small Business Rate Relief rateable value thresholds have increased with effect from 1 April 2017.
A hereditament is defined as 'a separate unit of rateable occupation'.
Qualifying hereditaments with a rateable value of £12,000 or less will get 100% rate relief. This will decrease on a sliding scale of 1% for every £30 of rateable value above £12,000 up to the cut-off point of £15,000 rateable value. In addition the rate bill will be calculated using the lower Small Business Rate multiplier rather than the Non-Domestic Rating multiplier which applies to non-eligible properties.
Business rates relief for small businesses up until 31 March 2017
From 1 April 2005 the Government introduced a new rate relief scheme aimed at small businesses. To qualify the ratepayer must occupy either:
- one property on the rating lists in England with a rateable value of less than £12,000
- one main property and other additional properties providing those additional properties have rateable values less than £2,600 and the total value of all the properties is under £18,000, the relief will be applied to one property only
Eligible hereditaments with a rateable value of £6,000 or less will get 50% rate relief. This will decrease on a sliding scale of 1% for every £120 of rateable value above £6,000 up to the cut off point of £12,000 rateable value.
For the period 1 October 2010 to 31 March 2017 the amount of relief is 100% for properties up to and including £6,000 rateable value, decreasing on a sliding scale of 1% for every £60 of rateable value above £6,000 up to the cut off point of £12,000 rateable value.
Additional support for small businesses
For those businesses that take on an additional property to expand their business, which would normally have meant the loss of small business rate relief, will be allowed to keep that relief for a period of 12 months.
Please contact the Local Taxation Team for more details.
Apply for business rates relief for small businesses
Where the ratepayer is a person, the application must be signed by the ratepayer and in any other case, ie a company, it must be signed by a person with authority to sign on behalf of the ratepayer.
The application form should be completed and returned to the details at the foot of the page.
If you have any queries regarding this form then please contact the Local Taxation Team.
Change in circumstances affecting small business rate relief
There are certain changes in circumstances we will need to know about.
You must notify us if:
- you occupy any property that you did not occupy at the time of making application for the relief
- There is an increase in the rateable value of a property you occupy that is not in the South Lakeland area
You must notify us within four weeks of the change occurring.