Apply for a discount or exemption

If you pay business rates, your property may be eligible for business rates relief.

There are various reliefs and exemptions available which can reduce your business rates liability.

You can apply online for the reliefs shown below.


Small business bonus scheme

You can get business rates relief through the Small Business Bonus Scheme (SBBS) if the combined rateable value of all your business premises in Scotland is £35,000 or less.

Apply for small business bonus scheme


Empty property relief

All empty properties can get 50% relief from business rates for the first 3 months they are empty. They can then get a 10% discount after that.

Empty industrial properties can get full relief from business rates for the first 3 months they are empty. They can then get a 10% discount after that.

Listed buildings and properties with a rateable value under £1,700 don't have to pay business rates at all.

Apply for empty property relief


Charities, sports clubs & recreation clubs

Charities and amateur community sports clubs can apply for relief of up to 80% if a property is used for charitable purposes. You may also be eligible for a discretionary award from the council (up to 100%).

If you run a non-profit recreation club, you're not automatically entitled to relief, but you may be eligible for a discretionary award of up to 100%

Apply for charitable relief


Rural rates relief

You may be eligible for rural rates relief.

You won’t pay business rates if your business is in an eligible area with a population below 3,000 and either:

  • the only village shop or post office, with a rateable value of up to £8,500
  • the only public house or petrol station, with a rateable value of up to £12,500
  • public libraries and public conveniences

East Lothian rural villages with a population less than 3,000

Qualifying conditions apply, however to find out more, or to apply, contact the Business Rates team.


Business Growth Accelerator Relief

You may be able to qualify for Business Growth Accelerator Relief if

  • your premises are a new build property
  • your rateable value has increased following an expansion or improvement to your property

New build premises

If your property is a new build, you may not have to pay Business Rates until 12 months after the building was completed.

New build properties are only charged from the date they are occupied. New occupants may then qualify for Business Growth Accelerator Relief for 12 months.

Expanding or making improvements to your property

If you have expanded or improved your property, and your rateable value has increased as a result of those changes, your Business Rates charge may be based on your old rateable value for 12 months.

Apply for business growth accelerator relief


Other business rates reliefs

There are a number of other reliefs available to help reduce your business rates bill.

  • Fresh start relief
  • New start relief
  • Renewable energy generation relief

Visit mygov.scot for more information


For all relief, eligibility criteria applies and applications will be subject to qualifying criteria.

If you have any questions, or would like to discuss your circumstances, contact our business rates team and we will make sure you get the help and advice you need.