Reductions to rates bills

General

Business Rates bills can be reduced in the following circumstances:

The information given below is a guide to these reductions only. For more details or to apply for a reduction, please contact the Business Rates Team.

Empty properties

No rates are charged on empty industrial properties for the first 6 months  that they are empty and on other empty properties for the first 3 months that they are empty.

Thereafter, the owner of the empty property is liable to pay an empty property rate (100% of the full charge) unless the property falls into one of the following categories:

  • From 1st April, 2011, if it has a rateable value of less than £2,600 (for 2010/11, less than £18,000);
  • the ratepayer is a charity and the property, when next in use, will be used for charitable purposes;
  • the ratepayer is a CASC and the property, when next in use, will be used as a CASC;
  •  it cannot be occupied by law (eg. because of a Health Notice);
  •  the person liable is only liable in his capacity as a personal representative of a person who has died, a liquidator or trustee under a deed of arrangement;
  •  the person entitled to possession is the subject of insolvency proceedings;
  • it is a listed building or is subject to a preservation order.

Unoccupied New Developments: Rate Relief Scheme (from 1 October 2013)

This is a Welsh Government Scheme under which a ratepayer may apply for relief for a qualifying unoccupied new structure that is subject to non-domestic rates. ‘New’ means:

  • completed less than 18 months previously, and
  • completed on or after 1 October 2013 and before 1 October 2016.

Relief may last for the first 18 months following completion, although this period will include the statutory 3 or 6 month exemption period referred to in the ‘Unoccupied Property’ section above.

State Aid ‘de minimis’ rules apply, read the Welsh Government’s guidance on Business Rates New Property Relief 2013 (pdf).

Download and complete the Business Rates Relief – New Developments application (pdf)

Open for Business Rate Relief Scheme (from 1 October 2013)

This is a Welsh Government Scheme that encourages long term vacant properties to be re-occupied.

Eligible properties are those which:

  • have been unoccupied for a continuous period of twelve months or more
  • have a rateable value of no more than £45,000
  • meet certain previous/existing use criteria

The use criteria are:

a. Either:

  • when last previously occupied, the property was in use wholly or mainly for retail purposes, or
  • where the property has never previously been occupied, it is in use wholly or mainly for retail purposes

b. For the purposes of the scheme:

  • a property is used for retail purposes if a trade or business is carried on there which consists wholly or mainly of the provision of goods or services for the personal use of members of the public who visit the property

c. And for these purposes:

  • ‘goods’ includes meals or refreshments for consumption on or off the property on which they are sold or prepared and intoxicating liquor for consumption on or off the hereditament on which it is sold
  • ‘personal use’ means unconnected with a trade or business
  • ‘services’ excludes provision of sleeping accommodation

The 12 month eligibility period for relief starts from the first day on which the premises becomes re-occupied which must be on or after 1 October 2013 and on or before 31 March 2015.

Relief must be applied for within six months after the first date of occupation or before 1 July 2015 if this is earlier.

Eligible applicants will be entitled to claim 50% rate relief for twelve months, subject to State Aid ‘de minimis’ limits, read the Welsh Government’s guidance on Business Rates Open for Business Relief 2013 (pdf) .

Download and complete the Business Rates Relief – Open for Business application (pdf)

Partly-occupied properties

If a property is partly occupied for a temporary period, you may be entitled to a reduction in your rates bill.  However, from 1st April, 2011, if a property has a rateable value of £2,600 or above (for 2010/11, £18,000 or above), in most cases the period of the reduction is limited to 3 months (6 months for industrial properties).

In these cases, we can ask the Valuation Officer to work out the rateable value of both the occupied and unoccupied areas. 

Charities

By law charities are entitled to 80% relief from rates where a property is wholly or mainly used for charitable purposes.

To qualify for this mandatory relief, charity shops must meet the following conditions:

  • they must be wholly or mainly used for selling goods given to the charity; and
  • money raised from selling goods must be used for the purposes of the charity.

We can grant additional relief up to the whole of the remaining 20% of the rates bill.

To apply for relief:

  • click here to download an application form to fill in and return to us
  • contact us and we will send you an application form

Community Amateur Sports Club (CASC's)

From 1st April 2004, many amateur sports clubs will be entitled to 80% relief from rates. We can also grant additional relief up to the whole remaining 20% of the rates bill.

To qualify for this relief, an amateur sports club must be registered with the Inland Revenue as a Community Amateur Sports Club (CASC).

To register as a CASC, a club must be able to answer “yes” to the following 5 questions:

To apply for relief:

  1. Is membership of the club open to the whole community?
  2. Are all the club’s facilities available to members without discrimination?
  3. Does the club’s constitution prevent profits of the club being distributed amongst its members (i.e. any profits must go back into the club)?
  4. Does the club provide facilities for and encourage participation in eligible sports?
  5. Does the club’s constitution provide that on dissolution of the club, any net assets are applied for approved sporting or charitable purposes?

You can get more information by visiting the Inland Revenue’s website at: www.hmrc.gov.uk 

To apply for relief:

Non-profit-making organisations

We can grant up to 100% discretionary relief to certain non-profit-making organisations, such as sports clubs and recreational societies such as gardening societies and so on.

To apply for relief:

  • click here to download an application form to fill in and return to us
  • contact us and we will send you an application form

Small Business Rates Relief Scheme

The following businesses are entitled to Small Business Rate Relief provided that the property is occupied.

  • Most businesses with a rateable value of £2,400 or less will receive a 50% reduction to their rates bill;
  • Most businesses with a rateable value between £2,401 and £7,800 will receive a 25% reduction to their rates bill;
  • Post offices with a rateable value of £9,000 or less will receive a 100% reduction to their rates bill;
  • Post offices with a rateable value between £9,001 and £12,000 will receive a 50% reduction to their rates bill;

For these businesses, we will make the reductions to rates bills automatically - there is no need to apply.

In addition, retail businesses with a ratable value between £7,801 and £11,000 can apply for a 25% reduction to their bill.

Retail businesses are businesses which consist wholly or mainly of the sale of goods, including the sale for consumption on or off the premises of meals, refreshments or alcohol.

Child care premises with a rateable value between £2,001 and £12,000 and credit unions with a rateable value between £2,001 and £9,000 can apply for a 50% reduction to their bill.

The following categories of business are not entitled to relief:

  • advertising rights;
  • beach huts;
  • car parks and spaces;
  • Crown properties;
  • electronic communication stations;
  • properties occupied by local authorities and community councils;

If a property receiving Small Business Rate Relief becomes unoccupied, it will no longer be entitled to that relief. From 1st April, 2011, if it has a rateable value of under £2,600, it will be exempt from empty property rates. If it has a rateable value of £2,600 or over, it will have to pay empty property rates (100% of the full charge) after an initial rate-free period of 3 months (6 months for industrial properties). However, for 2010/11, all small businesses are exempt from empty property rates.

Small Business Rate Relief  - October 2010 - March 2015

The Welsh Government has announced that the increased amount of rates relief for small businesses in Wales has been extended to cover the period 1st October 2010 and 31st March 2015. The following leaflet applies to 31st March 2015.

Downloads

All documents open in a new window.

File TitleSize
Small Business Rate Relief40 Kb

Get Adobe Reader

Download: Adobe Reader (external website). Adobe Reader allows you to view PDF files.

For further details on how to view documents, refer to our Document Viewers page.

 

Hardship

In exceptional circumstances, we may grant a reduction to the rates bill if you can prove that you are suffering hardship and if it is interests of council taxpayers for the reduction to be granted.

Before we will consider granting hardship relief, you must fill in an application form setting out the reasons for your application and you must also send us your audited accounts.

Page Details

Last Updated: 11.03.2014 at 08:50

  • Share this:
  • Email to a friend

Rate this Page

Rating form

Please Rate this page:* 

*  

 

 


CAPTCHA Image

 
Footer Links DirectGov Preparing for Emergencies Valid CSS Valid Level A W3C-WAI Accessibility SOCITM Better Connected Valid XHTML 1.0 Strict