Answers to frequently asked questions about rates
Click on any question to see the relevant answer.
What's the relationship between my land value and my rates?
The land value for your property is determined by the Valuer General at least every three years. We use your land value to calculate the rates for your property. We are currently using land valuations for the 'base date' 1 July 2012.
If you don't agree with your land value, you generally have 60 days to object after you receive your Notice of Valuation. The Department of Lands (Valuer General) will facilitate your objection when you contact their Objection Call Centre on 1800 110 038 or by visiting the Land and Property Information - Valuation website.
The Valuer General will advise you in writing of their decision, including the final date for an appeal. If you don't agree with the valuation, you have limited time to appeal to the Land and Environment Court.
You must still pay your rates while your objection is being considered. We will adjust your rates if your objection leads to a change of value.
How are my rates calculated?
Rates are calculated by multiplying your land valuation by a 'rate in the dollar' amount. The rate-in-the-dollar amount is determined by the Council each year.
The Council will also determine a 'minimum' rate that ratepayers will pay if their land value rate in the dollar calculation does not come up to a certain (minimum) amount. In 2016-17 the minimum rate for Residential properties is $752.25 and for Business properties it is $1,212.22. For example, if your land value rate in the dollar calculation came to $550, and your property was residential, then you would be charged the minimum rate of $752.25 in 2016-17.
For more information please see Rates and Charges FAQ's
How does my category affect the amount of rates I pay?
We will decide which category your property should be in based on its characteristics and use. All rateable land within Randwick City is categorised as either residential or business.
The rate-in-the-dollar amounts differ depending on the category of the land. For example, at Randwick if your land is categorised as residential you will pay a lower rate-in-the-dollar amount of land value than if your land was categorised as business. In some instances when a property is a mix of residential and business use, a mixed development factor can apply which means some residential rates and some business rates will be calculated for the property. Please contact us if your property has both residential and business uses.
If the usage of the property changes (for example, business to residential) you must notify us within 30 days of that change.
If you are not satisfied with the category given to your property, you may apply to have the category reviewed. If you do this, we will notify you of our decision and the reasons for the decision. If you do not agree with the category given to your property, you may appeal to the Land and Environment Court. You must do this within 30 days of receiving our review decision.
Do my rates increase each year?
Each year, each council, will increase rates either by the 'rate peg' percentage or a percentage in accordance with a 'special variation' as approved by the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART).
In June 2014, IPART approved a special variation for Randwick City Council to increase ordinary rates by 3.59% for three years as shown in the table below.
During the period of this special variation, Council's overall rates revenue cannot increase by more than the approved increases each year. When overall land values rise, the Council will reduce or adjust the rate-in-the-dollar amounts so that total rates income does not grow by more than the percentage increase approved by IPART.
What is the Environment levy?
In June 2014, IPART approved our special variation of 6% to continue our Sustaining our City Environmental Levy which has been in place for the past 10 years and was due to expire.
The Environment Levy appears as a separate line on your Rates notice. This levy funds our Sustaining our City Program.
The amount of environment levy that you pay each year is calculated using your land value and a rate-in-the-dollar amount. Unlike the way that residential and business rates are calculated the environment levy calculation is not subject to a minimum rate.
For more information please refer to Council's Operational Plan PDF, 6894.1 KB.
How is my domestic waste (garbage) charge calculated?
The Council must charge a Domestic Waste Management
Charge to each separate residential parcel for which the service is available.
We are restricted by law to ensure that the revenue we generate from the
domestic waste charge does not exceed the 'reasonable costs' incurred by us in
providing the service.The 2016-17 per service charge is $543.00.
To see more about your domestic waste service, visit our household rubbish page.
What is the stormwater management charge?
The stormwater management service charge appears as a separate line on your Rates notice. The Stormwater Management Service Charge provides us with a sustainable funding source for the provision of improved stormwater management services across the city.
- Residential property: $25 per annum (approximately 48 cents per week)
- Residential strata property: $12.50 per annum (approximately 24 cents per week)
- Business property: $25 per annum plus an additional $25 for each 350m2 or part thereof by which the parcel of land exceeds 350m2
Am I entitled to a pension rebate?
A pensioner rebate is generally available if you:
- are a pensioner and have a current Centrelink Pensioner Concession Card (PCC), or you are a Veterans Affairs TPI or EDA gold card, and
- reside in a property within the Randwick city area, and
- own the property or are legally liable to pay the rates on the property
You can apply personally at our Customer Service Centre or download the Pensioner Concession Application form PDF, 416.7 KB
To complete the form make sure your answer all relevant questions and sign the form twice on the third page. Return the completed form to us with a photocopy of the front and the back of your current Centrelink PCC or your Veterans Affairs TPI or EDA gold card.
Please feel free to contact us if you have any queries.
When are my rates due?
We will send your annual Rates notice in July of each year. If you wish to pay your rates in full you need to pay by 31 August. If you choose to pay by instalments, your payments are due on or before the following dates every year:
- 1st instalment: 31 August
- 2nd instalment: 30 November
- 3rd instalment: 28 February
- 4th instalment: 31 May
It does not cost any more to pay by instalments. We will send an Instalment notice at least 30 days before each instalment due date.
What are my payment options?
You may pay your rates by the following methods:
Contact your bank, credit union or building society to make this payment from your cheque or savings account (credit cards are not accepted).
Have your rates paid automatically from your bank account. Credit card and passbook accounts are not accepted. Download the Direct Debit Request form PDF, 73.71 KB.
Over the phone on 131 816
Go to any Post Office. Pay by cash, cheque and EFTPOS (debit cards only - credit cards are not accepted). Please take your complete notice to the Post Office.
Make cheque payable to Randwick City Council and send to: Randwick City Council, 30 Frances Street, Randwick NSW 2031.
Visit our Customer Service Centre located in our Administration Building, 30 Frances Street, Randwick.
If I pay by credit card is there an extra fee?
Yes, Randwick City Council charges a Credit Card Service Fee of 0.4% on all credit card rates transactions. We accept Visa, MasterCard and AMEX.
What if I'm having difficulty paying on time?
If you are experiencing difficulty in paying your rates by the due dates, you should contact our Rates Team as soon as possible, preferably before the account becomes overdue.
Council offers flexibility with alternative payment arrangements.