About Your Rates

Find out what your property rates are used for and how rates are calculated. Information on the Emergency Services Levy is also provided.

What rates are used for

Rates are annual taxes paid by property owners, that are then re-invested into the community.

Just some of the services and facilities covered by rates include:

  • Community support services
  • Environmental conservation
  • Environmental health
  • Libraries, leisure and community centres
  • Planning, building and engineering
  • Parks and reserves
  • Roads and footpaths
  • Safety and security
  • Waste management.

More information is provided in the document below:

Statement of Object and Reasons - Rating Strategy 2023/24

What do I get for my rates

Find out about the 2023/24 rates and key projects in the Budget and annual report page and the Budget and Rates booklet.

How rates are calculated

Rates are based on two factors:

  1. The rate in the dollar set by Council each year at budget time
  2. The valuation of each property, as assessed by the Valuer General.

The annual rates for each property are calculated by multiplying the applicable rate in the dollar by the valuation (GRV or UV) of the property. This is subject to the Minimum Payment. 

Rates = Applicable Differential Rate in the Dollar x Gross Rental Value or Unimproved Value.

Once rates are calculated, an Annual Rate Notice is generated and issued. 

GRV and UV explained

GRV or Gross Rental Value, is the fair rental value of a property, as determined by the Valuer General. It is an estimate of how much it could be expected to receive if the property was rented. ​

UV or Unimproved Value, is the market value of a property, under normal sales conditions. It is determined as though the property remains in its original, natural state, excluding any buildings or other improvements. ​

Emergency Services Levy

The Emergency Services Levy (ESL) is a Sta​​​te Government charge which is forwarded to the Department of Fire and Emergency Services (DFES).

DFES funds Western Australia’s fire and emergency services. This includes all career Fire and Rescue Service, Volunteer Fire and Rescue Service, Bush Fire Brigades, State Emergency Services units and DFES units throughout WA.

Please visit the DFES website for more information about the Emergency Services Levy.

More information and contacts

For more information about rates please contact us

Frequently Asked Questions 

What are Rates?

Rates are a tax levied on all rateable properties within the boundaries of the City of Kwinana in accordance with the Local Government Act 1995.

Why do we have to pay rates?

The overall objective of the proposed rates in the 2023/2024 Budget is to provide for the net funding requirements of the City’s services, activities, financing costs and the current and future capital requirements of the City, after taking into account all other forms of revenue. The formulation of a rating system is about achieving a means by which Council can raise sufficient revenue to pay for the services it provides.

How are rates calculated?

Local Governments calculates the rates to be paid on your individual property by using the following formula: property valuation x rate in the dollar (RiD) = rate payable. The property valuation is determined by the Landgate division of the State Government, by determining the values of the total properties in the City of Kwinana.

The rate in the dollar is then calculated by the City, by working out how much it will cost to run services and provide support to the community and dividing that overall amount by the amount of ‘rateable properties’ in Kwinana.

Why are my rates increasing?

Rate increases are based on a number of complex and inter-related internal and external factors. The Council is subject to inflation and the same cost increases impacting the local community, including the Consumer Price Index (CPI) was saw a 7.8% increase for the December 2022 quarter.

The Council’s costs are also subject to the Local Government Cost Index (LGCI) for WA, which impacts on the cost of delivering services to the community, plus the capital work programmes. The LGCI reflects the costs for wages, construction, and other services and is a better reflection of the cost increases that local government face. LGCI is forecast at 4.5% for June 2023.

What is Differential Rating?

Throughout Western Australia, the basis of using property valuations has been found to be the most appropriate means of achieving rating equity; however, the achievement of a wholly equitable rating system for all properties, in all areas, is a difficult task if it is based on the property valuations alone. For this reason, there are refinement options made available, such as differential rating, that the City of Kwinana has elected to use. Differential rating allows a Council to impose differential general rates according to any or a combination of the following characteristics:

  1. the purpose for which the land is zoned, whether or not under a local
  2. planning scheme or improvement scheme in force under the Planning and
  3. Development Act 2005; or
  4. a purpose for which the land is held or used as determined by the local government; or
  5. whether or not the land is vacant land; or
  6. any other characteristic or combination of characteristics prescribed.
What is ‘rates harmonisation?

Rates harmonisation is the process of streamlining and simplifying rate categories in line with the Council adopted Objects and Reasons. Rates harmonisation reduces the number of rating categories while ensuring that all rateable properties are being rated fairly and equitably giving due regard to the key rating values of objectivity, fairness and equity, consistency and transparency and administrative efficiency.

Why are we going through a harmonisation process?

The City is in the final year of its rates harmonisation process which began in 2018 in an effort to streamline and reduced the City’s rate categories, while ensuring that all rateable properties are being rated fairly and equitably. The City has undertaken the harmonisation process gradually to ensure that any properties impacted financially will transition over time and not receive a significant financial burden in any one year.

What will be the new rating category as part of the rates harmonisation, for my property?

This year the Improved Residential and Improved Special Residential categories will be harmonised into Improved Residential and the Vacant Residential and Vacant Non-Residential categories will be harmonised into Vacant.

2022/2023 Categories2023/2024 Categories
Improved ResidentialImproved Residential 
Improved Special Residential Improved Residential
Vacant ResidentialVacant
Vacant Non-ResidentialVacant
Improved Commercial and Industrial Improved Commercial and Industrial
General IndustryGeneral Industry
Mining and IndustrialMining and Industrial


Does the proposed harmonisation of rate categories change or affect my land zoning?

No. The rating category applied to your property does not affect the use and zoning of your property as this use and zoning is set out in the local planning scheme applicable to your property.

I’m having some issues paying my rates, what can the City do to support me?

The City provides a number of rate payment options from online payments, to direct debit or instalment plans. We also have a hardship policy to support those in our community who may be going through a tough time. The City is committed to working with its ratepayers to find a solution that meets their needs. Any ratepayer in need of assistance is encouraged to contact our friendly rates team on 9439 0200 or email rates@kwinana.wa.gov.au

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