Small business rate relief

Small business rate relief is a discount for small businesses and other organisations. 

You can't get small business relief if any of the following apply:

Small business rate relief discounts are based on the rateable value of the property in relation to lower and upper threshold figures set by central government.

From 1 April 2017, the lower threshold is £12,000 and the upper threshold is £15,000.

To get small business relief, either of the following must apply:

  • you occupy a single property with a rateable value of up to the upper threshold
  • you occupy one property with a rateable value up to the upper threshold and other properties that each have a rateable value below £2,900 (from 1 April 2017) and the total rateable value of all properties is below £20,000.

You can only get the discount for the main property. 

If you take on another property that means your business no longer meets these conditions, you can still keep getting small business rate relief for another year.

How much rate relief small businesses can get 

Properties with a rateable value below the lower threshold get 100% discount. This discount then decreases gradually until it reaches 0% for properties with a rateable value at the upper threshold. This sliding scale is called tapered relief.

From 1 April 2017, the discount goes down by 4% for every £120 of rateable value. 

Example small business relief discounts 

Example small business discounts
Rateable value in 2017Discount
Up to £12,000 100%
£12,750 75%
£13,500 50%
£14,250 25%
£15,000 and over 0%

How to apply for small business rate relief

You can apply for small business rate relief by filling in our online form.

Apply for Business Rates relief

You must keep paying the rates shown on your bill while you wait to hear from us, unless we've agreed you don't have to.

Backdating claims for small business rate relief

Granting relief is subject of the Statute of Limitation Act 1980 which limits backdating to six years.

What happens next

We will assess your application, this includes checking that you don't have any non-domestic properties in other council areas that would take you above the upper threshold. If you can get the discount, we'll then send you a new bill. If you can't, we'll let you know why.  

We try to make decisions within 4 weeks of getting all the information, but it might take longer.

If we don't give you the discount and you think we've made a mistake or you want to challenge a property's rateable value, you can appeal

Renewing small business rate relief

Once small business relief is added to your bill, you'll get it automatically the next year. However we regularly check that you are still eligible to receive relief. 

Changes in circumstances for small business rate relief

You must  contact the Business Rates team if your circumstances change. For example, if you've occupied another property, or if the rateable value of a property you occupy outside of Cheshire East changes. The Valuation Office Agency tells us about changes to the rateable value of properties within Cheshire East.

We do sometimes review reliefs. If you haven't told us about a change that means your property no longer counts, you'll have to pay the backdated business rates within 14 days. 

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Contact Business Rates

Contact us

Customer Service Business Rates Team available for telephone enquiries:
Monday - Friday, 9:00 - 13:00

0300 123 5013

Revenues Service
Cheshire East Council
PO Box 622


Page last reviewed: 04 December 2023