Exempted buildings

Certain properties are exempt from business rates. These include:

  • agricultural land and buildings, including fish farms
  • buildings for training or welfare of disabled people
  • buildings registered for public religious worship or church halls

Empty properties

You don't have to pay business rates on empty (unoccupied) buildings for three months. After that, most businesses must pay full business rates, unless the empty property rate has been reduced by the Government. If this applies you will see it on the front of your bill.

  • Some properties can get extended empty property relief:
  • industrial premises (e.g. warehouses) are exempt for a further three months
  • listed buildings - until they are reoccupied
  • buildings with a rateable value under £2,900 - until they are reoccupied
  • properties owned by charities (only if the property's next use will be mostly for charitable purposes)
  • community amateur sports clubs buildings (only if the next use will be mostly as a sports club)

Partially occupied property

The full charge is payable for properties that are partially occupied. However, there are exceptional circumstances when the council may reduce the amount payable, by way of a temporary reduction in Rateable Value via the Valuation Office. Such exceptional circumstances include the inability to fully occupy due to a fire or flood.