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Business rates frequently asked questions

Find answers to some of the most commonly asked questions about business rates.
Business rates phoneline

The business rates line will be closed on Friday 19 July 2024 for staff training.
We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause. 

You can continue to use the online forms during this time. The phone line will re-open at 9am on Monday 22 July 2024.

What are business rates?

Non-domestic rates (business rates), collected by local authorities are the way that those who occupy non-domestic property contribute towards the cost of local services. Under the business rates retention arrangements introduced from 1 April 2013, a proportion of the business rates paid is kept locally by the Council.

The money, together with revenue from council tax payers, revenue support grant provided by the Government and certain other sums, is used to pay for the services provided by your local authority and other local authorities in your area.

What if I change business address?

If you are moving out of your business premises we need the details of your move so that we can update our records and issue you with an amended account. You can access our moving form here.

Are all businesses rateable?

Generally, business rates are payable on most commercial properties like shops, offices and hotels. Self-catering accommodation such as holiday homes are also liable for business rates where they are available for use by short stay guests for 140 days or more per year.

What if I work from home?

It will depend on the circumstances of each case. If you work from home, the Council may charge business rates for the part of the property used for work, and you will have to pay council tax for the rest of the property (although your property’s valuation band may change).

Useful websites


Business rates

London Borough of Lewisham, Business Rates, PO Box 58993, London, SE6 9GZ.
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