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Categories and status checks
Find out here how to apply to have your property re-categorised, find out about mixed development land, postponed rates and combining the ‘lots’ on your rates notice.
If you need to check the rates status of a property, find out how to apply for a Section 603 Certificate.
Each parcel of land within the City of Sydney is declared residential or business, and rates are charged according to these categories. There is also a sub-category for businesses inside Central Sydney.
Ratepayers can apply to have a land category and sub-category reviewed by downloading, completing and lodging a re-categorisation form, available below.
The ratepayer must notify the City within 30 days when a land category changes from one category to another. If you disagree with the category (or the date it comes into effect) after the review you can appeal to the Land and Environment Court within 30 days.
Mixed development land
A mixed development property is charged at a combination of residential and business rates. Such properties could include a corner shop, doctor’s surgery or solicitor’s office with a residence attached. The residence should have its own entrance, kitchen and bathroom (or facilities for cooking and bathing). Premises with a common entrance and shared facilities usually aren't considered mixed developments.
Residential and business rates are charged according to the proportion of land used for each purpose.
Generally, the dual charges provide some financial relief to the property owner.
Mixed developments are determined and approved by Land and Property Information NSW, which also supplies a figure for rates and charges.
The figure is based on the proportion that the rental value of the business part bears to the rental value of the land as a whole. For more information on mixed development rates, contact the City on 02 9265 9333.
A ratepayer can apply for a postponement of part of the rates on land which is used only as the site of a house if it is valued for another purpose (for example, business use or the construction of residential apartments).
Rates attributed to the increased value are postponed for 5 years and then "written off", together with any accrued interest on those rates.
Applications for postponement are referred to Land and Property Information NSW, which calculates what portion of the land is affected.
The postponement ceases if the land use changes. If only part of the land use changes, a redetermination must be made.
If you think you may be eligible, call the City of Sydney on 02 9265 9333 to discuss the criteria and we will apply to Land and Property Information NSW on your behalf.
Owners of an apartment, unit or flat may receive a rates notice for each ‘lot’ on their property – such as the residence itself and any associated car spaces or storage areas. You can apply to have such lots aggregated (combined) so that your rates charges are calculated as one land value instead. This eliminates any of the minimum rate charges you may be paying for each lot, thus reducing the total rates bill.
We can only aggregate lots if:
- the ownership of each lot is exactly the same for each lot as per the title
- all lots are within the same strata plan/scheme (or it is noted on the strata plan that the lots are used in conjunction).
- none of the lots are moorings/marina berths.
The City will aggregate 3 car spaces (maximum) and all storage lots to a (residential) strata unit if they are:
- used in conjunction with the unit
- used by the occupier of the unit
- not leased out for private purpose.
You can apply to have multiple lots aggregated by downloading and completing the form below. For more information, contact the City on 02 9265 9333.
Status checks (Section 603 certificates)
Solicitors, real estate agents and members of the public who are buying a property can apply for a Section 603 Certificate to check the rates status of a residential or business address.
A statutory fee of $70 is charged for each Section 603 certificate. GST is exempt.
The usual processing time for a Section 603 certificate is between 24 and 48 hours from the date of receipt and payment.
Order your certificate through the mail or over the counter at one of our Neighbourhood Service Centres.
Your rates are calculated against the value of your land.
The valuation is supplied by the state government every 3 to 4 years and any objections or appeals must be directed to Land and Property Information NSW.
Note: If you have lodged an objection or appeal to Land and Property Information NSW you must pay your rates by the due date while the application is being considered.
Land exempt from rates
Though certain land is exempt from rates charges under local government laws (such as churches, hospitals and schools), almost all residential properties are not – the exception being residences attached to churches.
Land owned and used by public charities may be exempt.
Contact the City on 02 9265 9333 to find out more.
Last updated: Sunday, 30 June 2013