Changes to Council Tax discounts and exemptions

Council Tax discounts, exemptions and premiums can adjust the amount due on your Council Tax bill. The Local Government Finance Act 2012 introduced new rules allowing local councils to set their own discount, exemption and premium rates in certain situations.

Changes to Council Tax discounts and exemptions that took effect from April 2015

Empty and unfurnished property discount

From April 2015 this discount no longer exists. You can still apply for up to four weeks' discount if your property was unoccupied and unfurnished from April 2014 to March 2015, and for up to six weeks' discount for the year running from April 2013 to March 2014 (see below) using the Council Tax enquiry form.

Uninhabitable and newly built properties

From April 2015 the 100% discount granted up to twelve months for unoccupied property undergoing major works, or up to six months for unoccupied newly built properties, is no longer available.

You may wish to consider contacting the Valuation Office Agency  (telephone 03000 501501 for properties in Brighton and Hove) to make a proposal to remove the property from Council Tax listing. If removed, the property will not pay Council Tax until it is reinstated in the Valuation List.

Changes to Council Tax discounts and exemptions that took effect from April 2014

Empty and unfurnished property discount

For the Council Tax year running from April 2014 to March 2015, if your property was unoccupied and unfurnished, you can still apply for up to four weeks' empty and unfurnished property discount using the Council Tax enquiry form, with a maximum four week extension granted in some exceptional circumstances.

Properties that are empty and furnished in between lettings

From April 2014 the 10% discount no longer applies for empty properties that are intended for letting.  In these circumstances you will be required to pay a full Council Tax charge for unoccupied furnished homes.
 

Changes to Council Tax discounts, exemptions and premiums that took effect from April 2013

Second homes

From April 2013 the 10% discount no longer applies and you are now required to pay a full Council Tax charge for second homes.

Long Term Empty Property Premium

From April 2013, an additional amount of Council Tax (a "premium") is charged when a property has been empty for more than two years (unless it’s an annexe or you’re in the armed forces). The long term empty property premium is set at 50%, meaning that once your property has been empty for more than two years, you will have to pay the whole Council Tax bill, plus half on top again. In Brighton & Hove, these charges are set in line with the council's objectives of maximising the accommodation available and reducing the number of long term empty properties in the city.

Properties that are empty and unfurnished

For the Council Tax year running from April 2013 to March 2014, if your property is unoccupied and unfurnished, you can apply for up to six weeks' empty and unfurnished property discount using the Council Tax enquiry form with extensions to this discount granted only in exceptional circumstances.