Reduce Your Empty Property Business Rates Liability Using Property Guardians


Empty commercial property is subject to costly business rates and greater risk from squatters. Property Guardians can help change the classification of a vacant property from commercial to residential. This can help save you a huge amount of money on business rates, provide greater legal protection from squatters, and reduce standard security expenses.


Business rates and empty property rates are a major outgoing for owners of empty commercial property, with billions being paid each year. When a commercial building first becomes vacant there is a period of exemption from paying business rates, this is usually 3 months. Thereafter the Property Owners must once again pay full business rates, even if the building remains unoccupied.

Increasingly owners are turning to DEX’s Property Guardian service to occupy and secure their property prior to sale or development. Property Guardians provide a socially acceptable and commercially effective way to mitigate business rates. While commercial property is empty or lying idle, DEX Property Guardians temporarily move in, mitigating these costs by between 80-90% and in addition provide a low-cost security solution.

The process is simple. No change in planning is required as it is deemed temporary, so the property will remain with the same function. The temporary residential status also provider greater legal protection around squatting. Squatting in a residential property is a criminal offence, whereas squatting in a commercial property is seen as a civil offence, making it harder to evict trespassers.

Effective management of your business rates can help generate a significant saving, particularly where the property is to remain vacant for a long period. Having Property Guardian in situ with full occupation, enables the Property Owner to approach and submit plans to the VOA and apply for business rate mitigation.

Mit­i­gat­ing Busi­ness Rates with DEX Prop­er­ty Guardians Case Study

The Benefits

  • Possible savings of between 80-90% on business rates
  • No financial outlay, fees are based on a small percentage of the business rates savings
  • Property efficiently and cost-effectively secured
  • Greater protections from squatters
  • Constant access to the property for the client and their representative – facilitating a faster sale or development process
  • Property that remains fully maintained and not at risk of dilapidation

If you have prop­er­ty that is cur­rent­ly or soon-to-be vacant, con­tact us to find out how we can help you mit­i­gate busi­ness rates liability.
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