If you own a property that qualifies for an exemption you will not receive a Council Tax charge for the exempt period, but your council will send you a bill including information to let you know which valuation band the property has been placed in and what the Council Tax would be if it were not exempt.
If you believe you qualify for an exemption to be applied to your property, you need to contact the Council Tax Billing Section by email, email@example.com or by phone, 01858 828282. You will then be advised of the information required before they can make a decision about your application.
If you receive an exemption then you must tell the Council Tax Billing Section within 21 days of any change of circumstances which affects your entitlement. Failure to do so may lead to a penalty charge.
If the property remains unoccupied and unfurnished after any exemption period expires then it will attract a 100% Council Tax charge.
Some properties may be exempt from Council Tax and the following is a broad description:
Owned by a charity
Up to 6 months
Left empty by someone who has gone to prison
Previously occupied by a person in permanent residential care
Waiting for probate or letters of administration to be granted
Up to 6 months after probate is granted
Empty because occupation is forbidden by law
Waiting to be occupied by a minister of religion
Left empty by someone who has moved to receive personal care by reason of old age, disablement or illness
Left empty by someone who has moved to provide personal care to another person
Owned by a student and last occupied by a student
Subject to a repossession order
The responsibility of a bankrupts trustee
A site for a caravan, mobile home or mooring
Granny annexes or similar type of property
|M/N||All the residents are students|
|O||Used for UK armed forces accommodation|
|P||At least one liable person is a member of a visiting force|
|S||All residents are less than 18 years old|
|U||All residents are severely mentally impaired|
|V||At least one liable person is a foreign diplomat|
|W||It is annexed to a family home occupied by that families elderly or disabled relative|
If the property is no-ones main residence and is furnished it is entitled to a 10% discount.
From the 1st April 2013, under new Council Tax legislation, Councils are able to remove this discount. Harborough District Council has decided not to implement this change at the current time. Therefore the 10% discount on 'second homes' will still apply in our district.
The Government has decided to change the legislation because there is currently a shortage in affordable homes. Councils are looking to encourage owners of empty second homes to bring them back into use. The high demand for second homes can affect property prices, which can drive local people out of the housing market and puts increasing pressure for new house building on green fields.
Councils are also conscious of keeping everyones council tax low and by not subsidising those with more than one property this will be more achievable.
The Government are looking for local authorities to be less reliant on them for funding and this is another reason Councils have been given this discretionary power.
How can we help you?
If you would like advice on bringing your empty property back into use, the Council may be able to assist you. For instance, if you are looking to sell your property, we have a list of registered social landlords who operate within the district who may be interested in buying local homes, or there may be loans available should you wish to privately rent your property.
The Council will be looking at different ways to turn empty properties into homes using a range of initiatives. If you would like to discuss these in further details, please contact the Council on 01858 828282 and ask to speak to someone in Environmental Health (Environment) or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Contact the Council Tax team for further advice on exemptions
Pages in this section
- What is Council Tax?
- Council Tax-Enquiries
- The Council Tax Bill
- Who Pays the Bill?
- Paying your Council Tax
- Change of Details
- Discounts and Exemptions
- Banding Enquiry
- Carer's Council Tax Discount
- Disabled Relief Application
- Single Occupancy Discount Claim
- Council Tax Recovery & Enforcement
- How to contact the Council Tax Team
- Council Tax Financial Information
- Council Tax Support Scheme
- Council Tax Discretionary Discount - CTDD