Part-occupied property rate relief

You can sometimes get part-occupied property relief if you are temporarily not using part of a property included in the rating assessment. This is a discretionary relief, which means it's not guaranteed. There is no fixed amount for this relief.

You must apply before the relevant part of the property is back in use again.

You can only get the relief for the first 3 months a property is empty, or for the first 6 months where the property counts as qualifying industrial premises. You can apply again if the unoccupied area changes. With any new application, you'll need to explain exactly why you've made the changes. 

How to apply for part-occupied property rate relief

To apply, contact the Business Rates team with:

  • an explanation about why the property isn't in use
  • the date it became unoccupied
  • the date you expect it to be back in use
  • a detailed scale plan of the unoccupied / occupied area

You must keep paying the rates shown on your bill while you wait to hear from us, unless we've agreed you don't have to.

What happens next

We'll arrange to visit the property to check it's only part occupied.

If we approve the relief, we'll then contact the HM Revenue and Customs Valuation Office Agency. They will value the unoccupied area so we can work out what discount to give. You'll then get a new bill. If we don't approve the relief, we'll let you know why.

If you want to challenge either the valuation or our decision, you can appeal

Changes in circumstances for part-occupied property rate relief

You must contact the Business Rates team if the unoccupied part of the property comes back in to use.  

We do sometimes review reliefs. If the unoccupied part of the property is in use and you haven't told us, you'll have to pay the backdated business rates within 14 days.