Understanding your rates

Swan Hill Rural City Council gathers rates from property owners in our municipality to support local services and infrastructure.

Rate capping is in place to restrict the amount that councils can raise their rates each year. The rate cap is set each year by the Minister for Local Government.

Rate increases have been capped at 3.5% for the 2023/2024 year.

The rate cap applies to the total average rates collected by council on the general rate and municipal charge (if applicable). It does not apply to each property owner’s rates notice.

Rate charge

Council calculates your rate charge by multiplying two figures:

Council uses differential rating to ascertain the rate in the dollar. Differential rating is used to maintain fairness and relative consistency in the distribution of rates between property classes.

The land types and their corresponding rates in the dollar amounts are:

Rate type Rate in the dollar CIV (cents)
General rate 0.00440782
Residential and Industrial – Swan Hill and Robinvale 0.00458414
Vacant Residential Land – Swan Hill and Robinvale 0.01410503
Commercial properties within Residential, Business or Industrial zones of the Swan Hill Planning Scheme – Swan Hill or Robinvale 0.00573017
Farming – Dry land 0.00352626 

Special rate charge

Properties classified as tourism, commercial and industrial in the declared area of the towns of Swan Hill and Lake Boga pay the special rate.

Funds raised through the special rate are used by Swan Hill Incorporated to promote the Swan Hill region as a place to live, work, visit and shop.

Swan Hill Incorporated is governed by a local board and three sub-committees who carry out activities. This includes television and print advertising, shop local campaigns, professional development, business forums, local festivals and events, and promoting the region at consumer trade shows.

The special rate categories are:

Special rate categories Rate in the dollar CIV (cents) Min amount Max amount
Tourism and Hospitality 0.00247814 $50.00 $7,821.98
Commercial 0.00116463 $50.00 $7,821.98
Industrial 0.00040768 $50.00 $391.09

Garbage service charges

This charge is collected by Council to manage waste, including recycling, green waste and landfill. Every property with a habitable dwelling in the garbage service collection area are required to pay a garbage collection charge.

Bin service (required for habitable properties in the waste collection area) 2024/25
Option 1 240 litre landfill bin + 240 litre recycling bin $582 per year
Option 2 120 litre landfill bin + 240 litre recycling bin $384 per year
Additional service (Swan Hill township only) 2024/25
Optional 240 litre green garden waste bin $100 per year
One off charges 2024/25
Downsize Exchange 240 litre landfill bin for a 120 litre bin FREE
Upsize Exchange 120 litre landfill bin for a 240 litre bin $56.50
Cancel Cancel green garden waste service $56.50

Fire Services Property Levy

This is a State Government charge used to fund fire services in Victoria.

The levy has two parts:

  • a fixed fee
  • a variable fee calculated on your property's classification and capital improved value (CIV)


You can apply for an exemption if you own or occupy multiple parcels of farmland which are used for a single farm enterprise. Eligible single farm enterprises may only need to pay the fixed charge once for the farm property. 

Apply for an exemption

Visit the State Revenue Office website for more information about the Fire Services Property Levy.   

What your rates pay for

Rates brochure Our rates brochure offers a concise snapshot of our budget, providing insight into where your contributions are directed.

From vital services such as road maintenance, waste management, and public safety to administrative expenses, every aspect of our expenditure is clearly outlined, ensuring transparency in how your hard-earned dollars are used.

Rates brochure 2023/24(PDF, 306KB)

To find out more about how your rates are spent, see the Council plan and budget.