Rates - Frequently Asked Questions

2020/21 Rates

What is Rates Revenue collected by the City used for? 
Rates revenue is used in the provision of services for residents of the City for various capital and or maintenance expenditure on roads, footpaths, drainage, parks, sporting grounds and community facilities. The City also provides services such as libraries, aged care, community support, ranger, environmental health, planning, building, sanitation etc. Please refer to details in ‘your rates explained’. The City provides the required level of services for the ratepayers as agreed upon through numerous community engagements, approved by the Council and as legislated. 

How is the total Rates Revenue required by the City for 2020/21 computed? 
The 2020/21 capital and operating income and expenditure budget is prepared, excluding any rates income. The shortfall arising from this calculation is financed from Rates Revenue raised.   
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the City has provided relief where possible for those affected and has impacted the City’s other revenue streams. However, the City has undertaken a responsible fiscal planning and allowed for a zero-overall increase in rates revenue for 2020/21. This was to ensure that where possible the City maintains the same level of service as previous years.  

Why has my rates increased when the GRV of my property has decreased? 
Whilst your rates are computed by multiplying the rate in the dollar by the GRV, neither of them are constant nor compensating. In having to maintain the required and appropriate level of services the total expenditure of the City net of capital and operating income, is funded by the rates revenue. Therefore, a decrease in GRV does not translate to a decrease in rates nor would it automatically translate to an increase in rates. The rates are dependent on the rates revenue required and the GRV on a differential rating basis.  

Why has my rate in the dollar increased substantially? 
In trying to achieve the same rates revenue of the three categories of rates, ie residential (total GRV decrease by 13%), non-residential (total GRV increase by 12%) and vacant (total GRV decrease by 3%), the rates in the dollar has to be changed accordingly. Therefore where the GRV has decreased the rate in the dollar had to be increased to maintain the rate revenue.    

Will my rate in the dollar continue to rise indefinitely in the future? 
The rate in the dollar in dependent on the total rates revenue required to maintain the level of services required and the GRV. Below are a few examples on the rate in the dollar depending on the rate revenue required and GRV. Therefore the rate in the dollar will not necessarily increase indefinitely. 

 

Rate  Revenue required GRV Rate in the dollar 
$20,000,000 $300,000 0000.06667 
$20,000,000 $350,000 0000.05714 
25,000,000 $300,000 0000.08333 
$25,000,000 $350,000 0000.07143 


What steps has the City taken to ensure that only essential expenditure is under-taken? 

The budget was based on a zero-based budget approach where each expense item (down to the lowest level) was justified. Level of services are regularly reviewed and is an on-going process. Staff salaries have been frozen and employee costs maintained at 2019/20 levels despite the need for increased staffing levels in the Planning Department as a direct consequence of LPS3. 
Councillors made significant additional reductions during the June Special Council Meeting to approve the budget. 

Why can’t the City use its reserves instead of asking the Rate Payers to pay more?
The City has limited reserves and the 2020/21 budget has utilised as much reserve as is financially responsible whilst ensuring that future planned expenses to be funded from reserves are covered. 

Rates Instalment Due Date 

Notice Instalment Schedule Issue Date Due Date for payment
Notice issued Tuesday, 28 July 2020 Tuesday, 01 September 2020 
2nd Instalment Friday, 02 October 2020 Monday, 02 November 2020 
3rd Instalment Thursday, 10 December 2020 Thursday, 21 January 2021 
4th Instalment Thursday, 22 February 2021 Monday, 29 March 2021 


How to pay your rates?
All rates are due 35 days after the date of issue. The City offers a number of options for the payment of rates, including four instalment plans.  

  • Option 1: One payment 
    Up front payment of the total amount - there are no additional costs for this option. Full payment 35 days after the date of issue. 
  • Option 2 : Four instalments 
    The City also offers a four instalment plan. This option incurs a $48 administration fee and a 5.5% per annum instalment interest charge. 

All arrears, one quarter of the rates, waste management charges, administration fee and instalment interest charge is payable within 35 days of the rate notice being issued. The balance will be payable in three equal instalments approximately two months apart, as indicated on the notice). 
Late payment interest of 8% per annum is charged on all payments outstanding after their due date. This includes instalment payments that become overdue after each due date. 

Can I make a special payment arrangement with the City? 
If you are unable to pay your rates instalments due to financial hardship, you can apply for a payment arrangement. 

Rates payment methods 

  • Pay over the phone with a credit card: Please call 1300 885 175 
  • Pay online by credit card: Please note that payment by credit card is limited to a maximum of $100,000 per assessment per year. Visa and Mastercard payment – 0.5% surcharge applies.  
  • BPAY or BPAY View: Pay via internet banking. Biller code is 31435. Reference: This is found on your rate notice in the BPAY section of the payment methods. 
  • In person: At any Australia Post office. Note that payment is limited to a maximum of $10,000. 
    At Council Administration, 71 Stirling Highway, Nedlands. 
    Payments can be made by cash, cheque, EFTPOS or by credit card. 
    Cashier hours: Monday to Friday, 8.30am to 4.00pm 
  • By direct debit/payment arrangement through your financial institution: An initial set up fee of $43.50 applies for the direct debit option. Please contact the City for more information. 
    Complete the required form which is available on here and email to rates@nedlands.wa.gov.au  

 

Differential rates 
Differential rates adopted 30 June 2020 for the 2020/2021 financial year. 

Land Use Rate in the Dollar Minimum Payment
Residential 0.065578 $1,484 
Residential Vacant Land 0.082201 $1,968 
Commercial 0.073135 $1,957 


What is a minimum payment? 
If the calculation of GRV x rate in dollar is less than the minimum payment, then the minimum payment will be applied which is set in recognition that every property receives some minimum level of benefit from works, services and facilities provided.  A local government is able to set a minimum amount payable for properties in its district, and most local governments apply a minimum payment 

How are my rates calculated? 
Rates are calculated by multiplying the Gross Rental Value (GRV) or Unimproved Value (UV) by the rate in the dollar.
For improved properties the GRV is an annual rental value determined by the Valuer General.
For vacant land, where no rental value can be determined, the GRV is calculated on the basis of 3% of its capital (or resale value), for residential properties and 5% for commercial and industrial properties.

What is a GRV? 
The Gross Rental Value (GRV) is an annual rental value determined by the Valuer General. It is calculated by analysing actual rental information assembled from statistics obtained from property managers, owners and other sources. This means that properties are rated on their income earning potential rather than their resale value. Every three years the Valuer General is required to reassess the Gross Rental Values (GRV’s) within the metropolitan area. The 2020/21 year is a revaluation year and therefore the 2020/21 rates will be based on the new Gross Rental Values (GRV’s). 

What factors affect my GRV? 
Many variables affect the GRV of a property such as location, the number of bedrooms and bathrooms a property has, if the property has a pool and the age of the house. 

What can I do if I disagree with the GRV for my property? 
A property owner may lodge an objection against the valuation of a property within 60 days of the date of issue of a rates notice. 
For information on how your values are calculated & how to lodge an objection, please visit Landgate’s website or alternatively call Landgate Customer Service on 08 9273 7373. 
Rates assessments are required to be paid by the due date, irrespective of whether an objection has been lodged. Any reduction in rates as a result of a successful objection will be allocated to any balance outstanding or refunded. 

What is the Emergency Services Levy? 
All property owners in Western Australia contribute to the fire and emergency services through the Emergency Services Levy (ESL). 
Local Governments collect the levy on behalf of the Department of Fire and Emergency Services (DFES). All funds collected are forwarded directly to DFES, who then redistribute the money to emergency services throughout the State. Enquiries regarding ESL may be directed to DFES by: 

2020/21 rate for ESL is 1.4839 cents per dollar of valuation – in DFES’s Category 1 Area. The minimum charge for ESL is $84. The maximum charge for residential, multi residential and vacant properties is $441. The maximum charge for commercial, industrial and miscellaneous is $251,000. 

What is a pool inspection fee? 
State Government legislation requires that all private swimming pool enclosures must be inspected at least every 4 years. 

Pensioners and seniors:
Eligible pensioners or seniors may qualify for a concession from Council rates and the Emergency Services Levy. For the 2020/21 financial year, the pensioner rates capped amount is remaining at $750. Seniors will have their rebates capped at a maximum amount of $100. 

To register for a concession, please visit the Water Corporation’s rates concession page.
This application will register you with the Water Corporation and the City of Perth via the one form. Once it is approved by the Water Corporation it will be forwarded to the City of Perth to process on the rates account.  
The City does not administer the laws in regards to pensioner concessions. If you wish to lodge a complaint regarding the capping amounts for concessions, please contact your local MP. 

Register for eRates - it's easy! 

We encourage our ratepayers to receive their rates notices via email – it’s much more efficient and convenient, plus we don’t use paper which is better for the environment. Please use the link below to register for eRates and you’ll receive your rate notices and instalment reminder notices via email.  To register, you must have your Rates Assessment number.  This can be found on your rate notice. 
Register for eRates. 

Need to unsubscribe from eRates? 
If your situation has changed and you wish to unsubscribe go on a previous email you have received and click on the unsubscribe link on the bottom. 

What should I do if my contact details change? 
Please let us know promptly, in writing, of any changes to your contact details. Property owners must make sure that the City has the correct address and contact details for the service of notices. 

Have you recently purchased a property in the City of Nedlands? 
Below is some information about the settlement process in relation to your rates:

  • The owner or settlement agent must advise the City in writing of the sale of the property within 3 working days of settlement. 
  • The new owner is required to inform the City of the contact details immediately upon the settlement. 
  • The City sends a rates statement to both settlement agents advising of the rates raised and any outstanding balance.
  • Settlement agents usually deal with all financial transactions, which include the payment of Local Government rates, water rates, land tax etc.
  • Funds from both the vendor and purchaser are usually held at settlement for payment of these accounts 
  • The settlement agent will calculate, prior to settlement (on a daily basis), the portion of rates owed by both the vendor and the purchaser 

What happens to my rates if I demolished my building or erect a new or additional building/pool?  
You still have to pay your rates (full payment or instalment) as per the rates notice. When there are changes to your property that affect its valuation, the City receives advice of the new valuation and an effective date for that valuation from Landgate. An interim rates notice will then be issued by the City with the new rates amount. 
The City usually receives the interim valuations from Landgate within 3 to 5 months of the change. 
In case of demolition please contact the City to have your bins collected and we will give you credit and let us know, in writing, your new contact details to avoid any problem in the future. 

Who do I email my rates queries to? 
rates@nedlands.wa.gov.au