Rates & Finance

The Surf Coast Shire levies rates and charges in accordance with the Local Government Act 1989 and Valuation of Land Act 1960. Council's Revenue department handles all enquiries concerning this process and is happy to discuss any issues/concerns ratepayers may have.

Listed below is some useful information frequently requested by our ratepayers.

 (This brochure shows the proportion of the average rates bill being spent in each area.)

Fire Services Property Levy


 Who determines property values?

Property values are decided by professional valuers. They assess each property in line with Best Practice Guidelines laid down by the Valuer General.

What information is used to value a property?

A valuation is an assessment of the market value of a property, at a specific date and in accordance with relevant legislation and legal precedent.

Your property values are assessed using information such as:

  • market sales and rents
  • property type and
  • property features.

Valuers build a profile of value levels for different locations and property types, guided by market sales and rental evidence.

Council’s appointed valuers collect market sale information each year and information about property rentals and expenses from owners and tenants. Under property sales law, councils must be notified of property sales.

Valuer’s also use building and planning permits and other public documents to gather information about each property within the municipality. If further information is needed, an information request or a property inspection may also be necessary.

Valuers have powers to obtain additional information and will usually request this information by mail. However, a valuer can enter a property ‘at any reasonable time’ and may request any information that will help make ‘a true and correct valuation’. This may be done, for example, where an internal property inspection is needed to ensure an accurate valuation. Inspections are arranged with owner/occupiers.

How do I object to my property valuation?
You can object to your property valuation if you believe it is inaccurate or unreasonable. You must lodge your objection within the specified timeframes in the Valuation of Land Act. Contact the Surf Coast Shire’s customer service centre for details on 5261 0600 '

Helping Ratepayers
Council offers a range of payment options and assistance measures to help ratepayers who may be facing hardship or would like to stagger payments over several months.

To apply for further time and arrange a payment schedule, please download a Rate arrangement application form.

Rates Deferral
Surf Coast pensioners, low-income earners and eligible ratepayers can now choose to defer their rate payments following the introduction of Council’s hardship policy.

Ratepayers who qualify for the scheme can apply to defer all or part of their rates. Deferred rates in 2016/17 will attract a discounted interest rate of about 2.75% pa, compared to the penalty interest rate for non-payment of rates of 9.5% pa.

If you are experiencing financial difficulty paying your rates and charges, please contact the Customer Service on 5261 0600 to arrange a confidential discussion regarding alternative payment arrangements.

Rate deferment application form.