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Business Rates

Non Domestic Rates are a form of local taxation that helps us provide Council services. Rates are paid on buildings that aren't used as homes, commercial properties used by businesses, for example. The amount charged depends on the rateable value of the property, as determined by the Assessor.

All Business Rates pages can be accessed from the 'More pages in this section' menu.

Rateable Value

Normally, every five years all non-domestic business properties in Scotland are given new rateable values, which is referred to as a revaluation. The most recent revaluation came into effect from 1 April 2023, having been postponed since the previous revaluation in 2017.

Future revaluations will happen every three years. Therefore it is likely that the next revaluation will be April 2026.

The Scottish Assessor, who is independent of both local and central government, determines the rateable value of every business property in Scotland and sets this out in a Valuation Notice. The Valuation Notice sets the rateable value for the property and includes the property in the Valuation Roll, which is then used by the Council as the basis for rates billing and collection.

More information about valuations and practice notes on methods of valuation are available at the Scottish Assessors Association website in the Related Sites section of this webpage.

Reliefs and Exemptions

You might qualify for a relief or an exemption from paying a rates bill if, for example, a building stands empty, or is used by a charity or sports club, or as a general store, post office, food shop, pub, small hotel or petrol station in a rural community.

Business Rates – Publication of Data

The Scottish Government has requested that all local authorities publish a list of those ratepayers receiving rates relief. Due to the number of requests about rates Orkney Islands Council receives under the Freedom of Information Act, we now publish information about all Business Rates accounts online. The information is updated quarterly and includes rateable values, rates charges, reliefs and account balances.

You can download this information in the ‘Related Downloads’ section of this page.

Further Information

For further information on rates, rateable value or rate discounts, please contact the Finance team on Telephone: 01856873535 extension 2133.

You can also download a leaflet which provides further information on the revaluation and other general rates information. This is located within the Related Downloads section of this page.

Additional Business Rates guidance including a rates calculator is also available in the Related Sites section on this page.

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