Avoid Paying Council Tax on an Empty Property

Strategies Unveiled: How to Avoid Paying Council Tax on an Empty Property

6 Mins read

All around the world Tax is a common thing which is taken from the citizens to provide them facilities. Similarly, in the United Kingdom, the government has a tax known as council tax which is locally imposed on each and every citizen who lives there and has his own property.

However, many people have two or more properties in their name and pay council tax for a vacant property too, and think it is fair.    

So in this article, we bring you a complete guide which will clarify the idea and purpose of council tax and whether is it possible to avoid empty homes premium. Also, How to avoid paying council tax on an empty property tips and tricks.

Understanding the Council Tax Laws 

Explanation of Applicable Law and Regulation

The council tax is paid to the government because with that fund they will work on improving the facilities in the locality where you have that property. If you think carefully about the garbage collector, social services, emergency services, Environmental services and education which are free for poor people are being provided by the government by those funds you have paid in the form of council tax.  

There are two things which are seen first is a special exemption on council tax payment or reduction. Unfortunately, people are not aware of these things and paying their council tax as regular individuals.  

Understanding Council Tax Policies: Clarification on Empty Properties and Distinction Between Exemption and Reduction

There are different property types and each property’s land valuation is different plus the size of that property is also unique. So, the government impose tax based on those point including the tax rate which everybody is paying in that locality.

However, many people do not live in their house to have another house in some other locality or they are overseas workers. So, it is common to think about how to avoid paying council tax on empty property.

However, a tax exemption happens only if the property belongs to a full-time student or in case the property is under renovation or construction in that case until the renovation or construction is over the owner is exempted from paying the tax. Also, one more thing is there if a person who has the property is in prison or rehab he is exempted due to his health or crime issues.    

The reduction in council tax happens only if the family does not have a high annual salary and if the property owner is disabled or the owner of the house has any welfare support policies in his name which helps in paying the council tax. 

Legal and Ethical Considerations 

Importance of Adhering to Legal Requirements

It is important to know the rules and regulations that are imposed on you and what can happen if not followed properly and to avoid any issues at later dates. Council tax is an important tax in the country and local authorities make sure it is paid correctly by everybody.

Also, it’s a duty of a citizen to pay his taxes as a good and responsible citizen. It is understandable that a person can forget about paying the date that why the government always provides extra time and a huge deadline to payoff that amount of tax.

He can also extend the payment date by legally contacting the local authorities and if the reason is strong and the person should be allotted extra time the government will be able to give it. Otherwise, the government doesn’t give any extra privilege to any person as everybody is equal in the eyes of the government.

Discussion of the Potential Consequences of Wrongful Actions 

There are cases where a person intentionally avoids paying his tax amount which is not a right code of action. A citizen should always pay his taxes responsibly as the fund he is giving will be used by him and others equally.

However, Some people still don’t pay the taxes for they should know that avoiding tax can make them eligible for punishment in which a fine or legal action can be taken against them which will result in reputation damage. 

Strategies to Reduce or Avoid Council Tax on Empty Properties 

When it comes to money everybody wants to save some extra for the future and we answer your question of whether do I pay council tax on an empty property. It is simple everybody has to pay the tax but how much you are paying matters. There are several strategies that can be used to reduce the tax amount you are paying. Those strategies are mentioned below however, these are written over here just to make you know that these tips can be used however always be a responsible citizen. 

Property renovation and temporary occupation

Many people don’t know that if their property is under a major construction or renovation they can ask for exempting them from paying council tax for the duration of the time until it is not completed.

However, they are a catch the person will be free from not paying the tax if he can prove it plus he has to give an estimated date by which he needs to be free from the taxation and that date should be submitted with the renovation plan and other documents for verification and if the government finds it good to go than hurray you are exempted from paying the tax for some time. 

On the other hand, there are many student or regular peoples who own their own property but does not have a proper source of income which is considered a temporary occupation in the eyes of the government. Only they can ask the government to exempt them from paying the taxes and for that, they should also have proof that they do not possess any primary non-temporary job and are unable to pay the amount.  

Classifying the property as furnished

Many people have apartments and houses vacant and pay the council tax as regular individuals. So, consider classifying the property as furnished which will help the owner to take out some earnings from the vacant property. Also, as per the law, the council tax will be reduced if the owner classifies his house as furnished.

Now, many are thinking about what is a furnished property. Whenever a house is classified as a furnished property a person can rent it for himself by paying the amount monthly or quarterly to the owner. The house will be considered furnished when the house is put on rent with all the furniture a person will need to live. 

Applications for council tax discounts or exemptions

Occasionally many things happen in the locality and each and every person should be aware of those events or occasions because those can be a chance to get a discount or a complete exemption for themselves from paying the council tax. What kind of occasion or event makes that thing possible you were definitely thinking for example in your locality a scheme is being provided which is eligible by a house owner who is the only income holder in that family chain or a scheme like empty houses taxes are less than lively houses.

So, it is important that you check with your local authorities frequently to know about these events or events. 

Conversion to a business or commercial property use

In a locality, many people provide their property for business or commercial use purposes but what profit do they gain from it? The thing is there is many profit the owner get from availing his property as a commercial or business property. First will be that he will get rent from the person who will use that plot for commercial or business purposes. Second, the property will no longer be counted under council tax it will be subject to business-related tax for that property which is not the headache of the owner of that land.

However besides those how the owner proposes the contract depends on that. Additionally, if you are wondering about how to transition the property for commercial or business use you need to get in touch with the local authorities and let them know what you want to do and they will lead the further way for process.   

Other Considerations and Alternatives 

Investment in Property guardianship Scheme

We understand that your property is important for you and many people do not want to use their property as rent or want to provide it for any commercial or business purposes. There is an alternative or we can say a consideration you can go for instead of using those strategies mentioned above.

In some people’s houses, you must have seen different person takes care of the property which is not just a hired person working and taking care of your property. It is a scheme known as the property Guardianship ships scheme by using this scheme the person will avail some benefits for himself. 

Ensuring Security and Council Tax Reduction through Contractual Responsibilities 

The property will be secure and safeguarded by that person also as he has provided that house to that person for living he will be able to claim a reduction in his Council tax. The whole scheme will be based on a contract with the guardian who will be responsible for taking care of that house for a certain amount of period.

After that period is done based on the contract he has to vacate the house instantly and have to follow those other points mentioned within the contract. He should be following those for not getting any legal action against him and that is how this whole alternative works. 


In the above article, all the information related to the council tax is written. if anybody is wondering any questions like How to Avoid Paying Council Tax on an Empty Property? Or do I pay council tax on an empty property or what are the best ways to avoid empty homes premium? This article has what you want plus information that can help you to understand your right and eligibility for reducing or exempting your council tax.

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About author
I'm Abhijit Gorai, a writer specializing in UK-based male fashion, business, finance, tech, home decor, cars, property, and travel. With a keen eye for contemporary living, I offer insights that resonate with diverse audiences. As a tastemaker in men's fashion, I navigate the intricacies of business and tech, while also inspiring readers to enhance their lifestyle across various facets such as home decor, automotive passions, property decisions, and memorable travel experiences.
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