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Council Tax

Discounts and Exemptions

Am I entitled to a discount?

Council Tax is made up of a property element and a personal element. The personal element is based on at least two persons aged over 18 being resident in a property.

A 25% discount may be claimed if there is only one person over the age of 18 living in a property.

For billing purposes we do not count some people.  These are:-

  • persons under 18 years of age
  • persons over 18 years of age in respect to whom child benefit is still payable
  • students
  • student nurses
  • apprentices on a low wage
  • persons detained in prison
  • the severely mentally impaired
  • long term hospital patients
  • persons in residential care or nursing homes
  • certain carers and care workers
  • members of religious communities who have no income
  • members of International Headquarters or defence organisations
  • certain school leavers under 20 years of age
  • persons of no fixed abode resident in hostels
  • members of certain international organisations such as NATO

If all of the people living in a property fall into one or more of the above categories then a 50% discount may be claimed.

( Application forms for Council Tax discounts )

I own a house which is no-ones main residence, can I claim a discount?

A 100% levy is added to properties that are long term empty dwellings. These are defined as:

  • Unoccupied for over 12 months
  • Not a second home (as defined below)
  • Not entitled to a 50% reduction (as defined below)

A 10% discount will be granted on properties which are second homes. These are defined as:

  • No one’s sole or main residence
  • Furnished
  • Occupied other than a sole or main residence for a minimum of 25 days in any 12 month period (Evidence will be required)

A 50% discount may be claimed in some circumstances.  These are:-

  • purpose built holiday homes not allowed or unfit to be used for human habitation throughout the whole year
  • a dwelling owned or tenanted by a person required to live elsewhere to meet the requirements of their own, or their spouse’s employment and who is not a director of the company providing the dwelling
  • a job related dwelling occupied by a person who is the owner or a tenant of a dwelling elsewhere which is their sole or main residence
  • a dwelling undergoing major repairs or reconstruction for the 6 month period from the date of purchase by the liable person (This can be extended up to 2 years in some cases)
  • a dwelling undergoing major repairs or reconstruction for up to 12 months following the exemption detailed below

( Application forms for Council Tax discounts )

A disabled person lives in my house, can I get a reduction in Council Tax?

Where a property is the sole or main residence of at least one disabled person, the liable person may qualify for a reduction provided one of the following conditions is satisfied:-

  1. a room has been provided to cater for the disabled person's specific needs
  2. a second bathroom or second kitchen has been provided for use by the disabled person
  3. where sufficient floor space has been provided to permit the use of a wheelchair within the property and that a wheelchair is being used.

The valuation band we use to work out the council tax will be one band lower than the normal property band.

( Application forms for Council Tax discounts )

What properties are exempt from Council Tax?

There are categories of property which are exempt from Council Tax. These are:-

  • Unoccupied and unfurnished properties (maximum exemption of 6 months from the date the property became unfurnished)
  • Unoccupied new properties (maximum exemption of 6 months from the date the property was completed)
  • Unoccupied property where the householder is in hospital, a nursing home, or in residential care on a long term basis, or providing care, or is in prison
  • Unoccupied property which is undergoing major repair work or structural alteration (up to a maximum of 12 months from last occupation date)
  • Unoccupied property previously only occupied by students (a maximum of 4 months exemption – to cover the period from the end of one academic year and the start of the next)
  • Unoccupied Agricultural Dwellings
  • Unoccupied property where the liable person is a student
  • Unoccupied property which is owned by a Housing Body and is kept with a view to being demolished
  • Unoccupied property held by a Registered Charity (maximum 6 months exemption).
  • Unoccupied property repossessed by a bank/building society
  • Unoccupied property where the liable person has died and no grant of confirmation has been made. (and for up to 6 months after grant of confirmation has been made)
  • Unoccupied property available for occupation by a Minister of Religion
  • Unoccupied property where occupation is prohibited by law
  • Property where liability falls to be met solely by a trustee in bankruptcy
  • Property occupied only by persons who are severely mentally impaired and in receipt of qualifying benefits.
  • Property occupied only by students
  • Property occupied only by persons under 18 years of age.
  • Property held by Housing Association as a trial flat
  • Ministry of Defence armed forces accommodation

( Application forms for Council Tax exemptions )



Page Last Modified : 16/04/2014 10:45:28