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New properties

Information on completion notices, and how we decide completion dates

Completion notices

We'll issue a completion notice when we consider the works on a newly built property are complete, or expected to finish within three months.

The notice will be issued to the owner of the property.

In accordance with Section 17 of the Local Government Finance Act 1992, the completion notice specifies the completion day. This is the day on which it becomes liable for Council Tax purposes. It's entered into the valuation list from this date.

How we decide completion dates

The date we give on the notice is the date the property becomes liable for Council Tax, not the date it is fully finished. What we consider as 'complete' for Council Tax purposes is different to what needs to be complete for Building Control.

We consider a property as 'complete' when:

  • the basic structure is complete and the property is water tight (for example, external walls and a roof in place)
  • internal walls are built (not necessarily plastered)
  • floors are laid (although the screed or top coat of concrete doesn't need to have been laid)

We'll consider a property as liable for Council Tax even if the following work has yet to be completed:

  • first or second fix started or completed
  • internal decoration
  • fitting of sanitary ware and kitchen units
  • fitting of electrical plug points and switches
  • connection and installation of meters for water, gas and electricity (although services should be laid onto the site)

We can send a completion notice three months in advance, while work is ongoing or completing. 

The criteria for a completion notice is based on the state of the property alone. No allowance is given for small or large projects.

Things we can't consider

There are some things that we can't consider when serving a completion notice, as follows:

  • although access to the property is required, landscaping has no relevance on the determination of a completion date
  • we don't allow time for building control certificates or for the discharge of certain planning conditions, as the property only has to be substantially complete
  • we don't allow time for selling the property or finding a tenant, the property notice is issued if we believe it can be/is substantially complete

Unoccupied new properties

New properties which are unoccupied and unfurnished will be charged full Council Tax from the completion date.

Occupied new builds

Newly built and occupied properties don't require us to issue a completion notice. The date used to enter the property into the Council Tax list is the date of occupation. The occupier is then liable to pay Council Tax.


If you disagree with your completion notice, you can appeal within 28 days of the date we serve the notice. 

Please appeal in writing to:  

Finance & Resources Department, Borough Council of King's Lynn & West Norfolk, PO Box 26, King's Lynn, Norfolk, PE30 1PX.

If you still disagree with our decision, you can appeal to the Valuation Tribunal.