Retail Discount

The Government announced in the Budget on 29th October 2018 that it will provide a business rates Retail Discount scheme for occupied retail properties with a rateable value of less than £51,000 for 2019/20.

The value of the discount for 2019/20 was one third of the bill after other reliefs have been deducted, except for hardship or Local Discount relief, both of which are deducted last. For 2020/21 and for part of 2021/22 it is all of the bill and there is no rateable value limit.

Relief will be awarded to certain occupied retail properties that are wholly or mainly being used as shops, restaurants, cafes and drinking establishments. From 01/04/20 this will include properties in the leisure and hospitality industry along with estate agents, bingo halls and letting agencies etc.

Subsidies and EU State Aid

The EU State Aid rules no longer apply to subsidies granted in the UK following the end of the transition period. The UK remains bound by its international commitments, including subsidy obligations set out in the Trade and Cooperation Agreement (TCA) with the EU. The Council can still pay out subsidies and this includes subsidies related to COVID-19 that have previously been given under the State Aid Temporary Framework.

Please note that it has been decided not to issue annual bills to those accounts that will qualify relief. However 100% relief will only be awarded from 01/04/21 to 30/06/21. The relief then will drop to 66% from 01/07/21 at that point a bill will be issued with instalments starting from July 2021.

If you have been awarded this relief and feel this is incorrect please contact us.

Also you do have the option to opt out of receiving the relief, if you wish to do so please contact us using the details below.

Business Rates - Retail Discount - Qualifying Criteria

Properties that will benefit from the discount will be occupied properties with a rateable value of £50,999 or less for 2019/20 but any rateable value for 2020/21 and 2021/22. Properties that have closed temporarily due to the government's advice on COVID19 should be treated as occupied for the purposes of this discount.

Your premises must fall into one of the categories listed below:

  • Art galleries (where art is for sale/hire)
  • Bars
  • Betting shops
  • Bingo halls
  • Car/ caravan show rooms
  • Caravan parks and sites
  • Casinos, gambling clubs and bingo halls
  • Charity shops
  • Cinemas
  • Clubhouses, clubs and institutions
  • Coffee shops
  • Dry cleaners
  • DVD/ video rentals
  • Employment agencies
  • Estate agents
  • Funeral directors
  • Furnishing shops/ display rooms (such as: carpet shops, double glazing, garage doors)
  • Garden centres
  • Gyms
  • Hair and beauty services
  • Holiday homes
  • Hotels, Guest and Boarding Houses
  • Launderettes
  • Letting agents
  • Live music venues
  • Markets
  • Museums and art galleries
  • Nightclubs
  • Opticians
  • PC/ TV/ domestic appliance repair
  • Petrol stations
  • Photo processing
  • Post offices
  • Public halls
  • Pubs
  • Restaurants
  • Sandwich shops
  • Second hard car lots
  • Shoe repairs/ key cutting
  • Shops (such as: florist, bakers, butchers, grocers, greengrocers, jewellers, stationers, off licence, chemists, newsagents, hardware stores, supermarkets).
  • Sport and leisure facilities
  • Sports grounds and clubs
  • Stately homes and historic houses
  • Takeaways
  • Theatres
  • Ticket offices
  • Tool hire
  • Tourist attractions
  • Travel agents
  • Wellness centres, spas, massage parlours

Please note that the following types of uses are not eligible for retail relief;

i) Properties that are being used for the provision of the following services to visiting members of the public:

  • Financial services (e.g. banks, building societies, cash points, bureau de change, payday lenders, pawn brokers)
  • Medical services (e.g. vets, doctors, osteopaths, chiropractors)
  • Professional Services (e.g. solicitors, accountants, insurance agents/financial advisers, tutors)
  • Post office sorting office

ii) Properties that are not reasonably accessible to visiting members of the public

Calculation of Relief

The total amount of government-funded relief available for each property under the scheme for 2019/20 is one third of the bill and for 2020/21 is the full amount of the of the bill. There is no relief available under the scheme for properties with a rateable value of more than £51,000 for 2019/20.

The eligibility for the relief and the relief itself will be assessed and calculated on a daily basis.

The following formula will be used to determine the amount of relief to be granted for a particular property in the financial year:

  • Amount of relief to be granted = V/3 for 2019/20
  • Amount of relief to be granted = V for 2020/21 and for 01/04/21 to 30/06/21
  • Amount of relief to be granted = V/6 for 01/07/21 to 31/03/22
  • Where V is the daily charge for the hereditament for the chargeable day after the application of any mandatory relief and other discretionary reliefs, excluding those where the local authority has used its discretionary powers introduced by the Localism Act.

For 2021/22 relief will be capped at £2 million per business for properties that were required to be closed on 5 January 2021, or £105,000 per business for other eligible properties.

If you have not had relief and think you are eligible, or for further information, please contact Revenues:

Contact: the Revenues & Benefits team

Last updated on 15/03/2021