What is council tax?

Council Tax is a tax on domestic properties that is collected by local authorities. It is a yearly charge normally paid in ten or twelve monthly instalments starting in April each year.

Most homes have to pay Council Tax. There is only one bill per household, regardless of how many people live in the house.

Council Tax applies to houses, bungalows, flats, maisonettes, mobile homes and house boats, both owned and rented.

Some properties are exempt from Council Tax altogether and so no Council Tax is payable.

These include properties where the only people living in them are

  • students
  • all aged under 18
  • severely mentally impaired
  • diplomats and certain dependants
  • dependant relatives in self-contained parts of the property, such as a granny annexe

Empty properties that

  • are owned by a charity (exempt for 6 months)
  • have been repossessed
  • must not be occupied as it has been forbidden by law
  • are awaiting occupation by a minister of religion
  • are difficult to let separately because they form a part of another home
  • are a vacant pitch or mooring

Properties left empty by someone who

  • is in prison (but not for non-payment of fines or Council Tax)
  • is receiving care in a hospital, a home or elsewhere
  • is a student
  • is providing care to another person
  • has died (exempt for up to 6 months after the grant of probate or letters of administration)
  • is a trustee in bankruptcy

There is more detailed information on discount and exemptions should you be interested.

Get in touch about council tax

The quickest way to contact us is by using our online forms which are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. If you need to speak to us give us a call and talk to our Customer Services team who will be happy to help. Alternatively, you can email the service direct.

Telephone: 01932 838383