Business rates information

Business rates explained

All businesses benefit from the services that local authorities provide. Some services directly benefit business, for instance roads, the police and fire brigade. Others, such as education and housing, are indirectly beneficial. Non-domestic rates or business rates are the way non-domestic property users contribute towards the cost of providing those services. Please note that business rates do not include other services for which a separate charge is made, such as commercial waste collection.

Business rates are calculated by multiplying the rateable value of the property by the national poundage (known as the multiplier), which is set by the government each year. Rates are usually payable by the occupier of the non-domestic property. This will normally be either the owner/occupier or the leaseholder of the property.

What property is liable to pay business rates?
In general, business rates are payable on most commercial property, such as shops, offices, warehouses and factories. Self-catering accommodation, such as a holiday home, is also liable if it is available for commercial letting to short stay guests for 140 days or more. If you offer bed and breakfast accommodation in your own home to six people or less, you are exempt from business rates, provided that the bed and breakfast use is subsidiary to the residential use. Timeshare units are also liable to business rates.

Some businesses are not rateable, including:
Farm land and buildings, churches, sewers, public parks, certain property used for people with disabilities, property in an enterprise zone and moveable moorings.  

More detailed information can be found on the next page - Explanatory notes from the Government.

Change of address

The business rate is calculated on a daily basis. If you take over a commercial property you will be liable for business rates. If you cease to trade, vacate the property or move to another property within the Ealing area, the amount you pay or the amount you need to pay will alter. Please inform the council's business rates section of any move so that they can adjust your bill and make sure you pay the right amount. If you have overpaid your business rates you may be entitled to a refund. Proof of your vacation will be requested.

Pages in Business rates information

  1. You are here: Business rates explained
  2. Explanatory notes from the government
  3. Crossrail business rate supplement
  4. Access your account information online