You may qualify for a reduction in your business rates under one of the following criteria:
Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Relief Scheme
The Government announced the rate relief for 2023/24 in its Autumn Statement on 17 November 2022. The Guidance for the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Relief Scheme was published on 21 December 2022. This Council scheme is aligned to the Government guidance, including the eligibility criteria. The relief will provide eligible, occupied, retail, hospitality and leisure properties with a 75% relief, up to a cash cap limit of £110,000 per business.
To claim download and complete the Retail Rates Relief application 2023/24
Please complete and return form to London Borough of Brent, Business Rates, P O Box 425, Wembley, Middlesex, HA9 6SU or email NNDR@Brent.gov.uk
London Living Wage
Brent Council wishes to encourage employers to pay its staff the London Living Wage by offering a one-off discount on business rates who receive accreditation from the Living Wage Foundation.
This discount has been set at five times the accreditation fee paid to the Living Wage Foundation. The cost of accreditation varies depending on the size of workforce and the type of organisation but the maximum discount could be up to £5,000 for large employers. It is limited to one discount per employer.
To apply for the discount email email@example.com with evidence of your accreditation to the Living Wage Foundation together with your business rates address and account number.
At a revaluation, some ratepayers will see reductions or no change in their bill whereas some ratepayers will see increases. Transitional relief schemes are introduced at each revaluation to help those facing increases. Transitional relief is applied automatically to bills. Further information about transitional arrangements and other reliefs may be obtained from the GOV UK website
If you think you may qualify and relief has not been applied to your account please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Supporting small business relief
At the 2022 Autumn Statement on 17 November, the Chancellor announced the 2023 Supporting Small Business scheme. The scheme will cap bill increases at £600 per year for business losing eligibility for some or all Small Business Rate Relief or Rural Rate Relief at the 2023 revaluation.
If you qualify for this scheme, your bill for 2023/24 will automatically be applied to your account.
Details of the Supporting Small Business Relief Scheme
This reduction is not available on empty properties or ratepayers who are in receipt of any other mandatory relief e.g. charity relief.
Small business rates relief has two elements:
- A percentage reduction in the amount payable
- Calculation of the rates liability using the small business rates multiplier
A percentage reduction in the amount payable
- Rateable value up to £12,000 – no rates payable
- Rateable value between £12,001 and £15,000 – tapered relief between 100% and 0%
The percentage reduction is available to ratepayers who are liable for business rates on:
- One property with a rateable value below £15,000
- One main property and other additional properties that have rateable values less than £2,899 and the combined rateable value of all the properties is under £27,999 in London
Ratepayer are entitled to keep an existing award of small business rate relief for 12 months where they take up occupation of an additional eligible property, which would have previously disqualified them from relief.
You’re a small business but don’t qualify for small business rate relief
From 1 April 2017, if your property in England has a rateable value below £51,000 you’re considered a small business.
Even if you don’t qualify for small business rate relief, your bill will be calculated using the small business multiplier, which is lower than the national multiplier. This is the case even if your business uses more than one property.
For 2021/22 and 2022/23 the small business multiplier is 0.499 (49.9p), the national multiplier is 0.512 (51.2p).
- Download the small business rate relief application form (.docx, 25.9kB)
Empty properties are exempt from business rates for three months - six months in the case of certain industrial properties. After this period, rates are payable in full unless the unoccupied property rate has been reduced by the Government by order.
In most cases, the unoccupied rate is zero for properties owned by charities and Community Amateur Sports Clubs. In addition, there are a number of exemptions from the empty property rate. If the unoccupied property rate for the financial year has been reduced by order, it will be shown on the front of your bill.
Mandatory charity relief
Charities or trustees of a charity are entitled to an 80 per cent reduction in their business rates if the property they occupy is wholly or mainly used for charitable purposes. To qualify, the organisation will normally have to be registered as a charity with the Charity Commission. However some other organisations may also qualify, such as:
- Scout Groups / Girl Guide Groups
- Voluntary Aided Schools
- Societies registered under the Friendly Societies Act
Relief can also be granted to charity shops, however the charity will only qualify for relief if:
- the shop sells wholly or mainly donated goods; and
- the proceeds are used for the purpose of the charity
For unoccupied properties owned by Charities or trustees of a charity, mandatory relief can be awarded where it is evident that when next in use, the property concerned will be used wholly or mainly for charitable purposes.
In order to receive the relief, please write to us on headed paper stating why you are applying for mandatory rate relief. See our contact details.
Community Amateur Sports Clubs (CASC`s)
Community Amateur Sports Club (CASC's) that are registered with HM Revenues and Custom will be entitled to 80% business rate relief provided that their premises are used wholly or mainly for the purposes of the club.
In order to qualify as a CASC, the sports club must:
- be open to the whole community
- be run as an amateur club
- be a non-profit-making organisation
- aim to provide facilities for, and encourage people to take part in, eligible sport
The council has discretion to award additional relief to charities and non-profit making organisations. Discretionary relief can reduce your bills by up to 100 per cent of the charge. This could be either
- a 'top-up' of up to 20 per cent for organisations that have already been awarded the 80 per cent per cent charity relief, or
- varying relief for non-profit making organisations
To be considered for this type of relief your organisation must meet the following criteria:
- it must be a charity or not-for-profit organisation
- its main objectives are charitable, philanthropic or religious, or are concerned with education, social welfare, science, literature or the fine arts
- it must fulfil the discretionary relief eligibility criteria
Generally, discretionary relief will be awarded for the whole of the financial year (April to March) unless your organisation is not liable for the whole period, or does not fulfil the criteria for the whole period.
To apply, complete the online Discretionary Relief form. You will need to provide copies of the organisation's last 2 years audited accounts, supporting evidence as well as the organisation's articles of association.
Please report any changes of circumstances as soon as they occur.
It may be possible for the Valuation Office Agency to apportion a rateable value between occupied and unoccupied parts of a property.
Prior to submitting any application to the Valuation Office Agency, it must appear to the authority that part of the property will only be unoccupied for a short time.
Any application for 'partly-occupied property relief' must be made in writing to us and your application should include the following information:
- Details of the parts of the property that are occupied and those that are unoccupied
- The circumstances leading to the partial occupation
- What the intention of the business is in relation to the unoccupied parts? For example are you unable to occupy all of the property until refurbishments have been completed
- A plan of the property, clearly identifying the parts that are occupied and those that are unoccupied
- The date from which partial occupation of the property began and when the property is likely to be fully occupied or fully unoccupied
Following receipt of your letter, our inspection officer will visit your premises in order to verify the information you have provided in your request.
The level of relief will be equivalent to 100% of the amount that would have been due on the unoccupied part unless the property would have been subject to an empty property rate charge if it was fully unoccupied.
Relief will end when any of the following happens:
- There is a change in the partial occupation (more or less)
- It is the end of the financial year (though we can use our discretion to award relief in the following year if the circumstances permit it)
- There is a change in the rateable value (through revaluation or an appeal)
The council may reduce business rates where you would otherwise sustain hardship, and where it would be in the interests of the community to do so. You must demonstrate both hardship, and the value to the local community of the services you provide.
Applicants are required to submit a copy of their latest audited accounts so that we can establish whether or not business rates represent a significant proportion of the running expenses of your business.
You may also be required to submit estimates of the current trading position and indebtedness of your business so that we can look into the total debts of the business that are outstanding.
Full details of why the business is experiencing hardship are required together with plans as to how the business can improve its position. You will not be able to use 'the impact of the economic downturn' as a reason to apply for hardship relief. Relief is also unlikely to be given unless there are clear indications that the granting of relief will ensure the long term future of the business. Any relief awarded will be for a maximum of one year only.