​​​​​​What are rates and how are they calculated?

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Rates are a charge against a property (rating unit) and set by your local and regional councils. There are a number of factors that influence the amount​ of rates for an individual property and the rates that you'll pay.

  • ​​​​The use, location of the land, and services provided or available to your property

    The Council operates rating categories (differentials) based on these factors. Different categories (for example Residential, Commercial, BID (CBD) Commercial and Other) will incur different rates. ​​

    A description of these categories is in the Council's Funding Impact Statement

  • ​​​​​The valuation of your property

    City-wide property revaluations are carried out every three years. In November 2018, updated property valuations were sent to property owners, and these new valuations will be used as the basis for setting rates from 1 July 2019. ​The review showed the total of all property in Hamilton is worth $9.95B more than it was three years ago. Click here​ for more information about the property revaluations. 

    The Council uses capital value to calculate the general rate and a small number of targeted rates. The transitional rate, set on land value, is in place to transition the general rates from land to capital value.  

Want your rates invoice emailed to you? C​lick here to see how​ ​​ 

2020/21 Rates​

As part of the 2018-28 10-Year Plan, the Council adopted a number of changes to the rating system. Further detailed information regarding the basis of these changes can be found in the Reven​ue and Financing Policy.

After considering the feedback from the 10-Year Plan consultation, the Council adopted:

  • ​​​A 3.8% average increase for existing ratepayers in 2020/21 (reduced to 2.8​% in the 2020/21 Annual Plan)

    ​Although 2.8% is the increase to​ total general rates revenue (for existing ratepayers), the rates increase for individual properties may vary. The 2.8% rates increase is the average of how much rates have increased across all existing ratepayers – some properties will have an increase lower than 2.8%, while others will have an increase that is more than 2.8%. This is a result of the transition of the general rate from land value to capital value rating (2020/21 is the final year of the transition). If your land value makes up a lower proportion of your total capital value, your increase may be greater than 2.8% (as you would pay less rates under land value, but more under capital value)​.

  • ​​The three-year phased introduction of a Uniform Annual General Charge (UAGC)

    The Council has introduced a Uniform Annual General Charge which is set on each separately used or inhabited part (SUIP) of a rating unit

    A UAGC is a fixed portion of rates, applied on the same basis to all rating units, irrespective of their rating category.

    Being the final year of the three-year phased introduction towards the full UAGC will impact on rates increases for 2020/21. For 2018/19 the UAGC was $165.​ In 2019/20 was $348. In 2020/21 it is $534. The UAGC increases each year by the average rates increase percentage. 

  • To shorten the transition period of the general rate from a land value basis to capital value basis

    This year (2020/21) is the final year of the transition of the general rate from land to capital value.​​

  • Changes to the 'Rural' rating category 

    The Rural rating category has been renamed to 'Other' and the rates contribution for this group of ratepayers has increased. The 'Other' category's general rate is calculated to be the equivalent of the residential rate with a reduction for standard water and wastewater services not provided. 

  • Changes to our Service Use rates

    ​Service Use rates are applied to those properties classified as non-rateable under the rating legislation and qualifying community groups. The rates are for water, wastewater and refuse collection where provided. Water and refuse rates are applied as a fixed amount per SUIP, and wastewater is charged using a combination of the property's land and capital values. 

​Rates rebates​

Rates rebates are available for residential property owners who live in their property from 1 July, and require assistance in paying their rates. There are qualifying criteria for the rebate, including a maximum total gross household income for the most recent completed tax year. Click here​ for further information regarding rates rebates.​

​When are your rates due?

Rates are invoiced in four instalments for the financial year that ​begins 1 July and ends 30 June.
To avoid penalties you must pay your rates in full by the due date. Your invoice will be posted or emailed around four to five weeks before it is due. 

​Rates instalment due dates for the 2020/21 rating year

24 September 2020
26 November 2020
25 February 2021
20 May 2021​​​


Page reviewed: 03 Sep 2020 12:39pm