How to Avoid Paying Council Tax on an Empty Property

What is Council tax?

Council tax is a property location-based taxation system used within England, Scotland and Wales. Each property is assigned a band based on where it is situated and the owner or occupant of the property is responsible for paying the taxes.

How long can I leave my property unoccupied for?

There is no current law as to how long a property can be left empty in the UK – but most insurance companies will cover your vacant property for between 30-60 days.

An owner of a property, if left empty, is responsible for ensuring that annual council tax is paid. If your property is empty, it will still accrue the same costs as if it were occupied or let out.

Here are some ways in which you can avoid paying council tax on your vacant property.

  1. Contact your council – There are a few reasons as to why you may be entitled to an exemption from council tax. While a property is being refurbished you may be entitled to a stay on your council tax, this also applies to empty homes of people who may be in full time residential care, or who have passed away. You may also challenge the council tax band on derelict properties.
  2. Let your property out – If you let or rent out your premises, the new tenants will be responsible for paying the council tax at whatever rate band your property is in. This is one of the easiest ways of avoiding council tax if your property is empty.
  3. Appoint a property guardian – While a long-term tenant may be a good fit for some, some property owners require the flexibility of property guardians on a 28-day notice period. Appointing a property guardian will provide a landlord with all the benefits of having full time occupants, without the hassle of long-term tenants. Appointing a property guardian with The LOWE Group will ensure that your property is taken care of by fully vetted guardians, and will save you the monthly council tax bill.

For more information on how to secure your property while avoiding expensive tax rates, contact The LOWE Group here.