Empty unfurnished properties
Unfurnished properties are eligible for a 100% discount for the first month that they are unoccupied. After the first month Council Tax will be charged at the full amount. This discount will commence as soon as you (or your tenant) leaves the property to live elsewhere.
This does not apply to properties where the occupier has left the property on a temporary basis, for example for work or travelling purposes.
To apply for this discount, the property must not be anyone’s main residence.
Unoccupied and unfurnished properties undergoing major repair or structural alteration may qualify for a 25 per cent discount, allowed for up to one year only.
From 1st April 2019, an unfurnished property that has been empty for two years or longer has been charged at 200 per cent of the tax set.
From 1st April 2020, an unfurnished property that has been empty for five years or longer has been charged at 300 per cent of the tax set.
From 1st April 2021, an unfurnished property that has been empty for ten years or longer will be charged at 400 per cent of the tax set.
Empty furnished properties
There will no longer be a discount for furnished properties that are not occupied as someone's main residence, Council Tax will be charged at the full amount.
An unoccupied property may be exempt from Council Tax in any of the following circumstances:
- Unoccupied properties which are owned by a charity (exempt for six months)
- Unoccupied properties left empty by a person living in a hospital or a care home
- Unoccupied properties awaiting probate or letters of administration to be granted (and for up to six months after probate granted)
- Unoccupied properties where occupation is prohibited by law
- Repossessed property
- Property left empty by a bankrupt
- A pitch or mooring not occupied by a caravan or boat
- Unoccupied annexes or properties situated within the curtilage of another dwelling
- The taxpayer is in prison
- The taxpayer has gone to live elsewhere to receive personal care
- The taxpayer has gone to live elsewhere to provide personal care
A property will be exempt from Council Tax if it is one of the following;
- Colleges/University halls of residence
- Properties occupied solely by full time students
- Armed Forces accommodation
- Visiting forces accommodation
- Property occupied only by people under the age of 18
- Properties occupied solely by those who are severely mentally impaired
- Diplomats property
- Annexe occupied by a dependant relative