There are no reductions for unoccupied but furnished properties, 100% Council Tax is charged.
Empty properties are defined as those which are unoccupied and unfurnished. A 25% discount is granted for a period of 28 days from the date a property becomes unoccupied and unfurnished. Note that the 28 day discount is awarded against the property, not the owner. When the discount ends the full charge is payable. If the property remains empty for more than 2 years (from when it first became empty) the level of charge will increase.
Visit our Moving home webpage to tell us if you are moving house. If the empty discount is due, it will then be applied automatically.
From 1st April 2019 when a property has been empty for over 2 years, a ‘long-term empty premium’ of 100% is applied, so the rate of Council Tax payable is 200%. (Prior to this date the premium charge was 50%, making the previous rate payable 150%).
For the financial year beginning on 1 April 2020 the maximum premium is;
For the financial year beginning on 1 April 2021 the maximum premium is;
This means that from 1st April 2021, properties that have been unoccupied and unfurnished more than ten years will be charged four times the standard amount of the band for the property, see the example below: -
|300% Premium (10 years & Over)||£4,500|
|Council Tax Payable||£6,000|
If a property is undergoing substantial refurbishment work or structural alterations are taking place, you can apply for a 10% discount for up to 12 months. After this time, the property will be treated as a standard empty property. The Valuation Office Agency (VOA) may decide to delete the property from the Council Tax list. The VOA will only do this if:
The homes in the lists below are exempt from Council Tax.
|Homes owned by a charity; (exemptions are allowed for up to a maximum of six months from when the property became unoccupied)|
|D||Homes that are left empty by an owner or tenant who was living there until going into prison.|
|E/I||Homes that are left empty by someone who has moved to receive personal care in a hospital, a home, or elsewhere.|
|F||Homes that are waiting for probate or letters of administration to be granted. Exemption continues for up to six months after they are granted.|
|G||Homes that are empty because it is against the law for anyone to live in them.|
|H||Homes that are waiting for a minister of religion to move in.|
|J||Homes that are left empty by the owner or tenant who was living there until moving away to care for someone.|
|K||Homes that are owned by a student and were last occupied by that student.|
|L||Homes that have been repossessed.|
|Q||Homes that are the responsibility of a bankrupt's trustee.|
|R||Homes that are a site for an individual caravan, mobile home, or a mooring.|
|T||Homes that are part of a property which also includes another home and cannot be let separately.|
|M/N||Homes that are only occupied by students.|
|S||Homes that are only occupied by people aged under 18.|
|U||Homes that are only occupied by people who have a severe mental difficulty and who would otherwise have to pay.|
|V||Homes that are occupied by a diplomat or member of certain international organisations.|
|W||An annexe occupied by a person over 65 or disabled or severely mentally impaired who is dependant on the relatives that are residing in the main part of the property.|
|O||Homes that are forces barracks or married quarters. The Crown will pay towards the cost of local services through a special arrangement.|
|P||Homes where the taxpayer is in any visiting force (for example the United States Air Force), or is a dependant of a serviceman who doesn't normally live in the UK.|
Classes A to W above are only broad descriptions of the available exemptions. If you are waiting for the outcome of an application for an exemption, you must continue to pay the current bill. When an exemption ends we will send you a bill for the remainder of the financial year's charge.
Please remember, if your circumstances change, you must tell us within 21 days.