Council Tax discounts
We are receiving a large number of emails and telephone enquiries. In the first instance please login to or register for MyServices which will give you online access to your Council Tax, Benefits and Business Rates Accounts. Most changes to demand notices can be seen immediately online, whereas the issue of paper bills may be delayed depending on staff resources and mail availability.
A number of different discounts are available for Council Tax charges depending upon your circumstances.
When we send your Council Tax bill we will include any discounts we think apply to your property.
If your bill shows that we have given you a discount, you must tell us about any change in your circumstances that could affect your discount. You may have to pay a fine if you don't do this.
If there is no discount and you think you should get one please tell us why you think you should receive a Council Tax discount. We will tell you what evidence you will need to provide in support of the claim. We will then make a decision within 2 months. If you still disagree with our decision you can appeal the decision - we will explain how you can do this when we tell you about the decision. You should continue to pay your original bill whilst your appeal is outstanding.
If you should have been receiving a Council Tax discount in the past but were not you can claim back the money you should have received. Tell us about a discount you think you should have been getting.
Whether you receive a Council Tax discount or not you may be able to claim Council Tax Support.
Each year councils are required to make sure that discounts are being granted to the right households in their area. We may do this by sending out review forms asking for information. If you get a form asking about discounts, you should complete and return it, as a prompt response will ensure your Council Tax charge is correct.
Single occupancy discount
If you are the only adult living in your property you can apply for a 25% discount to your Council Tax charge. Apply for the single occupancy discount (PDF, 183KB).
When counting the number of adults living in a property certain groups of people, as detailed in the below list, are not counted.
You must complete the relevant form (please click on the relevant PDF link in below list) and send this with your single occupancy discount claim form, so that we know not to include these people (the address to send each form to is at the top of each form):
- Full time students (including student nurses, youth training trainees and foreign language assistants)
- 18/19 year olds who are at, or have just left school or college (PDF, 172KB)
- Patients resident in hospital
- Being looked after in care homes(PDF, 172KB)
- Severely mentally impaired people
- People in hostels or night shelters
- Low paid care workers - usually employed by charities
- People caring for a person with a disability who is not a partner or child under 18 years old
- Members of religious communities such as monks or nuns
- People in detention(except for non-payment of Council Tax or a fine) (PDF, 171KB)
- Members of visiting forces - certain international and defence organisations
If everyone at your property is in one of these groups you may be entitled to a further discount.
Temporary time away from a property due to holidays or work will not normally result in a discount.
Empty and unfurnished property discount
If a property is empty and unfurnished Council Tax will not be charged for 1 month.
However if the property has been empty beforehand ie. for more than one month, then you will not be entitled to this discount. In this situation you will pay 100% in Council Tax.
If a property remains empty and unfurnished for more than 2 years a 50% premium will be charged. In this situation you will pay 150% in Council Tax.
Contact us to claim this discount.
Unoccupied but furnished property
There is no discount where a property is unoccupied but substantially furnished, a 'second home'.
However, if a person is liable for Council Tax and has to live elsewhere as a requirement of their employment, a 50% discount may be given on their unoccupied but furnished home
(only applies where both properties are in England, Scotland or Wales).
Contact us for more information on the work related discount.
Disabled relief discount
If you are disabled or someone who lives with you is disabled, you may be able to get a reduction in your Council Tax charge. These reductions work by charging Council Tax at a rate one valuation band lower than the banding shown for your property.
The person liable to pay the Council Tax is eligible for this reduction if a disabled person is living in the property and one of the following is true:
- The property contains a room other than a bathroom, kitchen or lavatory which is predominantly used by and is required for meeting the needs of the disabled person
- The property contains an additional kitchen or bathroom which is required for meeting the needs of the disabled person
- The disabled person needs the use of a wheelchair within the property and there is enough floor space in the property for the use of a wheelchair
The regulations do allow a discount for properties in band A.
Carer's Council Tax discount
You can claim a 25% discount off your Council Tax bill if you are a carer.
Properties having major repair work or structural changes
There is no discount from your council tax regarding this.
Annexes that are used by the person living in the main house as part of the main home, or annexes which are occupied by a relative of the person living in the main house, can receive a 50% reduction in the Council Tax charge for the annex.
The 50% reduction is on top of any other discount you or your relative may be entitled to. For example, if your adult son is living in the annex on his own, he will need to pay Council Tax and will be entitled to a 25% single person discount and a 50% annex discount.
To be able to receive this discount the annex must form part of a single property (the annex must be within the grounds of the main house - not necessarily attached) and must be included in the title deeds of the main house and not registered separately. It must also be used in one of the following ways:
- Being used by the resident of the main house, as part of their main home,
- Being lived in by a relative of the person who lives in the main house - a relative could be a partner, parent, child, step-child, grandparent, grandchild, brother, sister, uncle, aunt, nephew, niece, great grandparent, great grandchild and great, great grandparent
Care leaver discount
From 1 April 2019 you may be entitled to 100 percent discount on your council tax demand notice, so you pay nothing, if you:
- Are a care leaver aged between 18 and 25
- Are liable for council tax, or a share of council tax, on a property within Harborough
If this applies to you, you will still need to apply for any other reduction you may be entitled to such as:
- Student discount or exemption
- Single person discount
- Council tax reduction
but we will top up your entitlement with a care leaver discount so you will not have to pay council tax until you reach your 25th birthday.
We will inform you once the discount has been agreed. It is important to keep paying your council tax while you are waiting to hear the outcome of your application.