What is a completion notice?

Completion notices are served on new properties. The completion notice is the document that specifies the date the Council thinks a property was finished by, or could be finished by, for Council Tax purposes. This is the date from which the Valuation Office Agency will include the new property in the Valuation List, and will be the date from which the Council Tax will be payable.

Where a domestic property is structurally complete, or where the work remaining can reasonably be expected to be completed within 3 months, a completion notice will be served on the 'owner' of the property. The 'owner' is defined as 'the person entitled to possession'.

Where work on a property is not yet completed, the completion notice can be served specifying the final completion day of up to three months from the date of service, for the remaining works for completion of the property to be carried out.

What if a property is complete but unoccupied?

New properties are liable for a full Council Tax charge from the date specified on the completion notice, even if they remain unoccupied.

Visit the discounts and exemptions section to find out if you could reduce the amount of Council Tax you have to pay. 

What criteria does Bath & North East Somerset Council use to decide a completion date?

We will visit properties while they are being built to see how much progress is being made. When the majority of the work has been done we will consider sending the owner a completion notice.

You can help us to set the correct date by letting us visit the property and inspect it inside to see what work still needs to be done. If there is no site access we may contact you to arrange a visit, however if no internal inspection is possible we will send you a completion notice based on an external visit only.

A property will be considered to be substantially complete when the:

  • basic structure is complete, for example, all external walls and roof are in place
  • internal walls are built
  • floors are laid 

A completion notice will be issued even if the following works have not been completed:  

  • fitting of bathroom and kitchen units 
  • fitting of electrical plug points and switches 
  • internal decoration of the property
  • connection of water, gas and electricity (although services should be laid on to the site)

What is needed to call a property complete for Council Tax purposes is very different to what is needed from Building Control. This means that if the Building Control team say the property is not complete it does not necessarily stop the Council from serving a completion notice for Council Tax purposes.

What if I disagree with the completion notice?

If you do not agree with the completion date on the notice you can appeal to the independent Valuation Tribunal. You should do this within 28 days of the date the notice was served. We recommend that you initially write to us, as we can consider changing the date dependent on the information you give. Please ensure you set out the reasons why you disagree with the date of completion.

Once we have received your email or letter we may ask you for further information, and then we will advise you of our decision as soon as possible. This allows you sufficient time to appeal further if you wish. A revised completion notice will be issued if necessary.

More information about appealing a completion date is available on the Valuation Tribunal Service website.

If you have any questions about completion notices, please contact us on 01225 47 77 77, or email counciltax@bathnes.gov.uk.


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