Empty property rating

​Business Rates will not be payable in the first three months that the property is empty. This is extended to six months in the case of certain industrial properties.

After the initial three or six month ‘free period’ has expired, the person who is “entitled to possession” of the empty property will be liable for 100 per cent of the basic occupied Business Rates unless:

  • Its Rateable Value from 1 April 2017 is less than £2,900.
  • It is a Listed building or scheduled ancient monument.
  • It is held by a registered charity or community amateur sports club and appears likely to be next used for the same purposes.
  • The owner is a company which is subject to a winding-up order or is a company in administration, or in liquidation.
  • The owner is an un-discharged bankrupt within the meaning of section 381(2) of the Insolvency Act 1986.
  • The owner is entitled to possession only in his or her capacity as the personal representative of a deceased person.
  • The owner is, in certain circumstances, prohibited by law or an action of the Crown from occupying the property.

The person or company “entitled to possession” is either the owner or leaseholder. If a new person becomes entitled to possession either during, or after, the three (or six) month period, a further ‘free' period cannot be granted.

If you are being charged Empty Rates and your think that your property is not capable of beneficial occupation - for instance, if it is in very poor condition and cannot be economically repaired or, is undergoing major renovation works which render the property incapable of occupation - the District Valuer may remove it from the Local Rating List. It is your responsibility to approach the Valuation Office Agency and request that the property be removed from the Rating List. (See Frequently Asked Questions). In the meantime, while the property remains in the Local Rating List the Rates are due and payable.

Enterprise Zone relief

Newly built properties which are located in a designated ‘Enterprise Zone’ will qualify for a maximum £55,000 relief per annum for the first five years. 

Businesses that locate on sites from the first round of Enterprise Zones must have done so before March 2018 to be able to access business rate reliefs. For new Zones starting in April 2016, they will need to have located onto the Zone before March 2021 to qualify.

Please note that the maximum time limit relates to the property, not the occupier.

However, as it counts as state aid it can only be awarded up to the state aid limit (currently 200,000 Euros altogether in any three-year period).

Currently, the only designated Enterprise Zone in the Wakefield Council area is the South Kirkby Business Park (former colliery site).

Contact us

Business Rates

Revenues and Benefits Service
Wakefield Council
Wakefield One
PO Box 700
Wakefield
WF1 2EB

01977 727 121