Business rate exemptions

Business rate exemptions can apply to both empty and unoccupied properties.

Empty properties

Shops and offices that become empty are exempt from business rates for the first 3 months, after this period a 100% charge is payable.

Industrial premises such as factories, warehouses, workshops and stores are exempt for the first 6 months, after this period a 100% charge is payable.

Other properties exempt from paying empty property rates on an indefinite basis include:

  • listed buildings
  • ancient monuments
  • where the liable person is a deceased person's representative
  • where the liable person is subject to bankruptcy/winding up order
  • where the ratepayer is a company in administration/liquidation
  • where the rateable value is less than £2,900
  • new properties where a completion notice has not been issued
  • where occupation is prohibited by law
  • where a property that is held by a charity and appears likely to be next used for charitable purposes, or that is held by a community amateur sports club and appears likely to be next used for for the purposes of the club

Occupied properties

Certain occupied properties are exempt from business rates, these include:

  • agricultural land and buildings
  • fish farms
  • fishing rights
  • places of religious worship
  • certain property of Trinity House, for example, lighthouses and buoys
  • sewers
  • property of drainage authorities
  • parks
  • property used for the disabled
  • air raid protection works
  • swinging moorings
Page last updated: 21 November 2018
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