Unoccupied Property Rating
Business Rates will not be payable in the first three months that a property is empty. This is extended to six months in the case of certain industrial properties. After this period, rates are payable in full unless the unoccupied property rate has been reduced by the government by order. In most cases, the unoccupied property rate is zero for properties owned by charities and Community Amateur Sports Clubs.
Empty properties with a rateable value of less than £2600 will receive a zero empty property rate for the financial year 2012/13
There are a number of exemptions from the empty rate. For full details contact the Business Rates section.Previous unoccupied property changes (for information)
With effect from 1st April 2008 the government brought in legislation that changed the way in which business rates were charged on empty properties.
Commercial properties have 3 months from the date they became empty where there is no rates charge.
Industrial properties have 6 months from the date they became empty where there is no rates charge. (Prior to this, industrial properties were not subject to empty rates charges).
Since 1st April 2008 after the exempt period the empty charge is at the same level as if the property was occupied.
The exceptions (properties that continued to be exempt from empty rate charges) include:
• Listed Buildings Properties whose rateable value was below a certain threshold
For the financial years 2009/10 and 2010/11 the government temporarily increased the threshold to £18,000 so that more properties would receive 100% empty relief
With effect from 1st April 2011, the empty property rate threshold returned to the lower level of £2,600.
Partly Occupied Property Relief
A ratepayer is liable for the full non-domestic rate whether a property is wholly occupied or only partly occupied. Where a property is partly occupied for a short time, the local authority has discretion to award relief in respect of the unoccupied part.
For full details contact the Business Rates section.