UK Non-Domestic Business Rates 2021

non domestic business rates


How your rates are calculated

Business rates are payable on most non-domestic properties, including buildings part-used for non-domestic activity.

  • A property’s rateable value (RV) is based on a Valuation Office Agency (VOA) valuation using open market rental values as of 1 April 2015, which is then multiplied by a centrally set ‘multiplier’.
  • The multiplier you need to use may vary based on your company size and location and will indicate the tax liability you will pay in each pound of the estimated rateable value.
  • Business rates liabilities for the following tax year will be issued annually by letter via local authorities in February-March.
  • You can look up your rateable value, which can be multiplied by the multiplier to calculate liabilities for the applicable financial year.
Year Standard multiplier* (above RV £51,000) Small business multiplier (below RV £51,000)
2021-22 51.2p 49.9p
2020-21 51.2p 49.9p
2019-20 50.4p 49.1p
2018-19 49.3p 48.0p

*Note 1: A higher multiplier rate is applied to properties within the City of London – 52.0p standard rate and 50.7p for small businesses

Reliefs and exemptions 

Note: Since April 2020 businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors in England have not had to pay business rates for the 20-21 tax year. This relief is applied directly by the local council.

At the 2021 Budget, the Chancellor announced that these businesses in England would continue to receive 100% relief from April -June 2021. From July- March 2022 businesses would receive 66% relief.

There are several reliefs and exemptions available for qualifying use-classes, industries and rateable value thresholds. In England your local authority will apply reliefs for:

  • Exempted buildings
  • Empty buildings – for 3 months after the property becomes vacant in England & Wales. Notify your local authority when a property becomes vacant.
  • Transitional relief – phased billing if your liability changes by more than a certain amount at revaluation.
Key Relief Areas England
Covid-19 Business Rates Relief 100% relief from April 2020 – June 2022 with 66% relief from July – March 2022. For retail, hospitality and leisure. Qualifying businesses include:

  • shop
  • restaurant, café, bar or pub
  • cinema or live music venue
  • assembly or leisure property – for example, a sports club, a gym or a spa
  • hospitality property – for example, a hotel, a guest house or self-catering accommodation
Small Business Rate Relief Properties with an RV of less than £15,000, only occupying one property.

100% relief for properties with and RV under £12,000. The rate will be tapered between £12,000 – £15,000.

Rural Rate Relief Properties in eligible areas (rural areas with population of less than 3,000) that are the only village shop or post office with an RV of less than £8,500; or the only public house or petrol station with RV of less than £12,500.
Charitable Rate Relief Eligible charities and community amateur sports clubs may apply for relief of up to 80%.
Enterprise Zones For those starting up or relocating to an Enterprise Zone. Find your local enterprise zone to check rates relief.
Hardship Relief Ratepayers experiencing financial difficulties may apply to their local authority for hardship relief which may grant a discount or exemption to the ratepayer at their discretion.
Retail Discount 100% discount in first three months of 2021-22 for those occupying properties in retail, leisure and hospitality use-class. 66% relief from July – March 2022.

This discount will be available on top of any other rates discount you are eligible for. If you opt-out of the retail discount for 2021-22 you cannot opt back in.

You can find a full list of exemptions, types of relief for England here.

March 2021


This technical factsheet is for guidance purposes only. It is not a substitute for obtaining specific legal advice. While every care has been taken with the preparation of the technical factsheet, neither ACCA nor its employees accept any responsibility for any loss occasioned by reliance on the contents.

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