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Business rates

Business rates are the way those who occupy non domestic buildings contribute to the cost of local services. They are also known as non-domestic rates. We collect these rates and keep a percentage. 

The business rate is calculated by multiplying the rateable value of property by the standard or small business rating multiplier. The government sets the rating multiplier.

For 2023-2024 the multiplier rates are: 

  • small business multiplier: 49.9p
  • standard multiplier: 51.2p

For 2024-2025 the multiplier rates are: 

  • small business multiplier: 49.9p
  • standard multiplier: 54.6p

The Valuation Office Agency assess the rateable value of all business and other non-domestic properties (properties that are not just private residences) in England and Wales. This is called a revaluation.   

Rateable values are the amount of rent a property could have been let for on a set valuation date. For the 2023 valuation, that date was 1 April 2021. We use these rateable values from the VOA to calculate business rates bills. 

Revaluations are carried out to reflect changes in the property market, which means that business rates bills are based on more up-to-date information. The latest revaluation came into effect on 1 April 2023. 

Contacting the Valuation Office Agency

We are responsible for anything to do with your business rates bill. The VOA is responsible for the valuation of your property. You have to contact the Valuation Office Agency directly for all queries about your rateable value. 

You can pay your business rates online and manage your account through OpenAshfield

Stop Press - Non Domestic Rating Act 2023

There is now a legal requirement for business occupiers to notify the Valuation Office Agency within 60 days of any changes.

"The most significant change under the Act will be the introduction of a new duty to notify being placed on ratepayers, due to come into force in the coming year (2024/2025)”.

The rationale for this change is to support the move to more frequent revaluations.  The Act places a duty on ratepayers to proactively provide information to the Valuation Office Agency. The obligation will fall on any person who is for the time being a ratepayer in respect of a hereditament. This will require all ratepayers (including those who would be a ratepayer but for any exemption) to assess their own reporting obligations and proactively comply, using an online portal.

This will consist of 2 main administrative duties:

  • Ratepayers will have a duty to notify the Valuation Office Agency within 60 days of any changes in the identity of the ratepayer, or any changes concerning the hereditament (Ratable property) that may affect its rateable value; and
  • Ratepayers will need to file an annual return within 60 days of 30 April each year, to confirm that they have provided all required information.
  • website: Non Domestic Rating Act 2023 -

Letting us know about starting and ending occupation

You can let us know when you start occupying premises, or when you end occupation using the forms in the related documents section of this web page. 

Completed forms should be returned by: 

Business rates relief

You may be able to get help through one of the business rate relief schemes. We manage: 

For many of the schemes we will contact you if you are eligible and you do not have to apply. 

Empty or partially occupied properties

You do not have to pay business rates on empty properties for up to 3 months. There is more information on this and on extended relief on the GOV.UK website. 

If part of your property is not being used and is completely unoccupied, we may be able to offer a reduction on your rates. You will need to write to us and show: 

  • a detailed plan of the premises showing clearly which areas are currently occupied, and which are unoccupied
  • the date that the part-occupation commenced, and when it is expected to cease
  • the reason why the part-occupation became necessary
  • whether there is any intention to sublet or sell the unoccupied area
  • whether any machinery or equipment will be stored in this area
  • any other information in support of your claim.

Exempt properties

Some types of property are exempt from paying business rates. These include: 

  • farm land and agricultural buildings
  • churches
  • certain properties used by people with disabilities
  • property situated within an Enterprise Zone, such as Sherwood Business Park
  • public parks
  • moveable moorings
  • sewers. 

Latest business rates news


The Valuation Office Agency published a news story on 17 April 2024 regarding false claims that the deadline to appeal the 2023 rating list is 30 June 2024. They have clarified that challenges to the 2023 list are still generally permissible until March 2026 and are encouraging ratepayers to take caution in staying safe from scammers.

The full news story is available at

The Valuation Office Agency already have clear standards setting out expectations regarding the conduct of professional rating agents and they are proactively addressing the misrepresentation.

Autumn statement 2023

In the Autumn statement on 22 November 2023, the Chancellor announced the following:

  • Retail, Hospitality and Leisure (RHL) rate relief scheme to continue at 75% in 2024-2025, up to a maximum of £110,000 per business
  • Small Business multiplier to be frozen at 49.9p and will now apply to all properties, regardless of occupancy, with rateable values below £51,000
  • Standard multiplier to increase in line with September’s Consumer Price Index figure (6.7%) to 54.6p

Rogue business rates agents - June 2023

We have been alerted by the Valuation Office Agency that there are some rogue business rates agents operation and scamming businesses.

When picking an agent, use the list collated by the Valuation Office Agency:

Ways to contact us about business rates

If you have questions about business rates, or paying your business rates, you can contact us by: 

Business Rates
Ashfield District Council
Urban Road
Kirkby in Ashfield
NG17 8DA