Business Rates

The national non-domestic rating system was introduced in 1990. Through non-domestic rates (sometimes known as Business Rates) the users of non-domestic property contribute towards the cost of the services that local authorities provide. The non-domestic rate income is paid into a national pool and then redistributed between authorities in proportion to their adult population. This income, combined with Council Tax income from domestic properties, Government grants, and miscellaneous income such as car parking fees, funds Council spending.

Who Pays the Rates?

Rates are usually payable by the occupier of non-domestic property. This will normally be either the owner-occupier or the leaseholder of the property. If a property is empty, however, empty rates are payable by the person entitled to use it. (Business Link guide to business rates)

Running a Business from Home

There is no definitive answer as to whether you will need to pay business rates in you start a business from home. Good general advice is available on the following website.

In most cases where it involves part time use of a spare room, business rates will not be payable; it depends on the extent and frequency of your business use of the room. However if it involves people regularly visiting your house, then they may be and it is best to seek clarification from the Business Rates Office (tel. 01509 634831 or

How Much Do I Pay?

The rate bill for a non-domestic property is calculated with reference to the rateable value of the property as assessed by the Valuation Officer. Rate bills can be reduced by applying rate relief - a variety of reductions are available, including relief for empty properties, or for charities

Collection of business rates

Charnwood Borough Council is responsible for collecting business rates and handling queries about your bill but they are passed on to the Government. Rates are usually payable by the occupiers of non-domestic properties such as shops, offices, warehouses, factories, nursing homes, childcare nurseries, hotels, restaurants and guesthouses. The Council will normally send you your rates bill in March or April. It sets out your payments for the year ahead and explains how they have been calculated and how they will be collected (Information on ways to pay your bill).

If you can't pay an instalment or have a query about your bill, it's important to contact the Council immediately. You may be able to agree to reschedule payments. Never simply ignore a bill. The council may take action against you, resulting in you having to pay more, or ultimately you could face court action.

If you think that your bill is wrong or that you are entitled to a reduction, you should contact your local council and explain why. But you should still continue to make payments even if you are disputing how much you should pay. See the page in the Business Link guide on business rates reliefs.

  • Business Rates deferral scheme leaflet (PDF Document, 0.14 Mb)
    For further information please see this Government produced leaflet or contact our Business Rates office on 01509 634831. The leaflet also gives details of the Small Business Rate Relief scheme.

Empty Business Property

From 1 April 2010 empty business properties with a rateable value of less than £18,000 are exempted from business rates. Read about empty property relief on the Valuation Office Agency website