London Borough of Croydon

Changes to exemptions and discounts for empty properties from 1 April 2019

In April 2013, the council changed its approach to council tax discounts and exemptions due to significant housing pressures for local residents and introduced a number of options to help bring empty properties back into use:  

  • Class A (uninhabitable exemptions) and Class C (empty and unfurnished exemptions) no longer exist and full council tax will need to be paid.
  • The 10% discount for properties that are empty and furnished no longer exists and full council tax will need to be paid.
  • Where a property has been empty and unfurnished for more than two years, an additional 50% premium is now added and these properties will therefore pay 150% council tax

Changes to the empty property premium from 1 April 2019

From 1 April 2019, the premium for properties that have been empty and unfurnished for more than 2 years will increase from 50% to 100% and these properties will therefore pay 200% council tax.
 
From 1 April 2020 an increase of 200% will be applied for properties that have been empty for at least 5 years and these properties will therefore pay 300% council tax.

From 1 April 2021 an increase of 300% will be applied for properties that have been empty for at least 10 years and these properties will therefore pay 400% council tax.

All other exemptions, discounts and discount disregards remain the same.

Help with empty properties

If you are interested in returning your property to use then also please contact the Empty Property Officers at Croydon Council to advise them of your plans. The Empty Property team are part of the council’s Housing Renewal service and are very experienced in helping owners bring long-term empty homes back into use, whatever barriers you may have encountered so far. The officers can offer a range of assistance, both practical and financial, that can benefit the owners of qualifying properties. The Empty Property Team can be reached on 020 8760 5470 or by email on hsg-emptyproperty@croydon.gov.uk.  If the Empty Property Officers are not available when you call please be sure to leave a voicemail and they will call you back as soon as possible.

More details of the Empty Property service can be found by following the link Private housing Empty Properties

Some properties may be entitled to an exemption, which means no council tax is payable.  The different types of exemptions are listed below:

Relating to the owner or resident - 

  • All residents are under the age of 18 
  • All residents are full time students or severely mentally impaired 
  • The owner or tenant has died
  • The owner or tenant is in prison
  • The owner or tenant is a long-term hospital in-patient
  • The owner or tenant lives in a nursing home, care home or certain type of hostel
  • The owner is a student in the UK who is living elsewhere for their studies
  • The owner has been made bankrupt and the property is in the hands of the trustees in bankruptcy
  • The owner or tenant has moved out in order to provide personal care for another person or to receive personal care themselves.

    Relating to the property - 
  • It is a self-contained unit that forms part of a larger property and the occupier is a dependent relative of the person living in the other part of the property
  • The property is an annex that cannot be let separately from the main property because of planning restrictions
  • The property is an empty caravan pitch or houseboat mooring
  • Occupation of the property is prohibited by law 
  • The property is in the hands of the executor or administrator of the estate (either probate has yet to be granted or it is less than six months since probate was granted)
  • The property has been repossessed by the mortgage lender
  • The property is owned by a charity and has been empty for less than six months

    Other exemptions - 
  • One of the residents is a foreign diplomat, a member of a visiting armed force or a member of an international headquarters, e.g. NATO
  • The property is armed forces accommodation owned by the Secretary of State for Defence
  • The property is waiting to be occupied by a minister of religion.

To apply, please complete the online exemption form

Contacts

Council tax section

Telephone: 
020 8726 7000
Minicom: 
Payment line - 0345 300 0614 (option 3)
Address Line:

Council tax section

London Borough of Croydon

Bernard Weatherill House

8 Mint Walk

Croydon, CR0 1EA

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