Owners of unoccupied non-domestic properties may be liable to empty property rates which are charged at 100 per cent of the normal liability.
Liability begins after the property has been empty for 3 months or for empty factories and warehouses, after 6 months.l
Certain types of property are exempt from empty property rates including:
- the initial 3 or 6 month exempt period
- Listed buildings
- properties whose occupation is prohibited by law.
- properties with rateable value less than £2,200 from 01/04/2008
- properties with rateable value less than £15,000 from 01/04/2009
- properties with rateable value less than £18,000 from 01/04/2010
- properties with rateable value less than £2,600 from 01/04/2011
Small business rate relief
A permanent small business rate relief scheme was introduced in Wales from 1 April 2018.
The scheme allows for the following relief:
- Most occupied properties with a rateable value of £6,000 or less are eligible for 100% relief - this means you won’t pay business rates on those properties
- The rate of relief decreases from 100% to 0% for properties with a rateable value between £6,001 and £12,000. Different rules apply to post offices and properties used wholly for child care by registered child care providers as explained below
Post offices and properties which include post offices
- Those with a rateable value up to £9,000 will receive 100% relief
- Those with a rateable value between £9,001 and £12,000 will receive 50% relief
Section B - registered child care premises
- For registered child care premises used wholly for the purposes of child care, the Welsh Government is providing 100% relief starting from 1 April 2019 and this will be in place for three years to 31 March 2022
How to apply
If the property you occupy has a rateable value of up to £12,000 and it falls within Section A above, small business rate relief is applied automatically to your bill so you do not need to apply.
If you think the property you occupy satisfies the criteria in Section B above, and you have not yet applied for relief, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Small business rates for multiple businesses
From 1 April 2018 changes to Welsh Government regulations limit the number of properties eligible for Small Business Rate Relief for multiple businesses.
Where a ratepayer is liable for more than two properties on a single local non-domestic rating list (the local list), and those properties meet only the rateable value conditions, the ratepayer will only receive relief for a maximum of two such properties.
The aim is to allow rate relief to be targeted to support small and local businesses rather than larger businesses or national chains.
Under Article 4 of the regulations, if a ratepayer is liable to pay business rates for more than two properties shown on the local Non-Domestic Rating list in each council area, which satisfy the rateable value conditions, the ratepayer must give notice of those properties to the council as soon as possible.
It is the responsibility of the ratepayer to advise the council if they are currently receiving more than two instances of Small Business Rate Relief for any properties they are responsible for paying business rates on.
To report a change of circumstances please email email@example.com
Registered charities and other ‘not for profit’ organisations are entitled to mandatory relief of 80% of the rates on any non-domestic property wholly or mainly used for charitable purposes.
Download the application form for Mandatory Relief (pdf)
Organisations that are not entitled to mandatory relief may apply for discretionary rate relief by submitting a written statement with the application form.
Community Amateur Sports Club (CASC)
If a sports club has registered with Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs as a CASC and is wholly or mainly used for the purposes of that club or other registered clubs it is entitled to 80 per cent mandatory relief.
Rates may be reduced if it is demonstrated that a ratepayer would sustain hardship and that such action is in the interests of the community.
Apply in writing to the council with supporting evidence.
Please note that a case that relies only on the financial considerations of the ratepayer cannot be considered - the interests of the community are also relevant.
Download Local taxation: policy for mandatory and discretionary reliefs (pdf)
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone (01633) 851589