Recently issued figures from the Government have shown that a good number of small businesses are benefitting from Small Business Rate Relief that was doubled last October and which continues until September 2012. Apparently some 330,000 businesses are paying no rates at all as a result of the scheme whilst another 170,000 businesses are seeing their rates discounted. The average amount of the benefit is £1340 per year.
But things could get better as the Government, through the Localism Bill, are giving local authorities the power to set local discounts on business rates provided that the funding for the discount is local.
To qualify for 50 per cent relief, businesses need a 2010 rateable value of below £6000. Between £6001 and £12000 and the relief is reduced to 25 per cent. However, until September 2012, the reliefs are doubled. If you think you qualify (and aren't already receiving relief) see http://www.businesslink.gov.uk/bdotg/action/detail?itemId=1086075891&type=RESOURCES for more information.