Council Tax - discounts for properties
Unoccupied and unfurnished
This exemption relates to the property and the discount or exemption you are entitled to depends on:
How long the property is empty and unfurnished for
Whether your property is actively being marketed for sale or let
A previous owner or occupier's use of the property
This Exemption is based on the length of time the property has been empty. So if the property has been empty and unfurnished prior to your claim it may be that we are unable to award you the full 6 months exemption.
Exemption can be awarded if less than 6 months has elapsed since the property was last occupied for a period of 3 months or more. Maximum exemption is 6 months. This exemption applies to the property. If you become the owner or tenant of a property that was previously unoccupied and unfurnished, the 6 months maximum exemption may already have been fully or partially used. If the property remains unoccupied and unfurnished 10 per cent discount will be awarded for a further 6 months. When the discount ends a 200 per cent Council Tax charge will apply.
However, if the property is being actively marketed for sale or let 10 per cent discount can be awarded for a further 12 months. After the property has remained unoccupied and unfurnished for 24 months, the discount will end and a 200 per cent Council Tax charge will apply.
We have discretion to delay the 200 per cent charge for up to a year if the property meets certain criteria:
The property is taking a long time to sell or let in a stagnant market
The owner has agreed with the Council to take positive steps to re-occupy the property
The owner is finishing renovations prior to moving in or selling or letting and can demonstrate that these works are progressing
Although failing to currently meet the 25 day occupancy criteria for second home status the owner can provide evidence of 25 days occupancy for prior years and the immediate preceding year.
Please refer to the Long Term Empty Property Discretion Application form for more information.
Water and wastewater charges on your property will remain unaffected by the increased council tax charge.