We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue we'll assume that you are happy to accept cookies.

Skip to main content

Council tax premium on long-term empty properties

From 01 April 2019, a premium of up to 50% on top of the full council tax charge will apply to properties which have been unoccupied and unfurnished for more than two years to encourage owners of empty properties to bring them back into use.

The Local Government Finance Act 2012 amended existing legislation to give councils the power to charge a premium of up to 50% on top of the full council tax charge in respect of properties which have been unoccupied and unfurnished for more than two years.

In 2018 the Government further amended existing legislation to give councils the power to charge a premium as detailed below:

  • From 1 April 2019, an additional empty homes premium of 100% on properties which are empty for more than two years
  • From 1 April 2020, an additional empty homes premium of 100% on properties which are empty for more than two years and less than five years
  • From 1 April 2020, an additional empty homes premium of 200% on properties which are empty for more than five years
  • From 1 April 2021, an additional empty homes premium of 100% on properties that are empty for more than two years but less than five years
  • From 1 April 2021, an additional empty homes premium of 200% on properties that are empty for more than five years but less than ten years
  • From 1 April 2021, an additional empty homes premium of 300% on properties which are empty for more than ten years

As this premium applies to the property, a change of ownership or tenancy will not affect the premium. If when you purchase or lease a property it has already been empty and unfurnished for two years or more, you will have to pay a premium on top of the full council tax charge.  The additional charge can only be removed by bringing a property back into use.

There are two classes of dwellings which are exempt from the premium. These are:

  1. A dwelling which would otherwise be the sole or main residence of a member of the armed services, who is absent from the property as a result of such service
  2. A dwelling, which forms part of a single property (an annexe) that is being treated by a resident of that property as part of the main dwelling

Gloucester City Council, at a full meeting on 24th January 2019 decided to set the premium at 50% with effect from 1 April 2019 and to further increase the empty homes premium from April 2020 and April 2021 as detailed above. The council has made the decision, in part, to support its incentive to encourage owners of empty properties to bring them back into use.

Council tax bills from 1 April 2019 for any properties meeting these criteria will include the premium and you will have to pay a 150% council tax charge.

If you have an empty property that you might like to rent out we can help -  landlord incentive scheme

Gloucester City Council can offer a stress free service to find you a suitable tenant and help set up a tenancy with the following incentives:

  • Finder’s fee depending in size of property
  • Deposit and rent in advance
  • Alternatively offer of a Deposit Bond Incentive, depending on size of property up to two months Deposit Bond
  • Financial incentives for a twelve month assured shorthold tenancy
  • Help towards 5 year electrical certificate
  • Free property inspection to check compliance with ‘Housing, Health and Safety Rating System’ (required by legislation)
  • Free landlord starter pack includes guidance to satisfy the provision of ‘prescribed information’ to lawfully commence a tenancy
  • Help and assistance through the life of the tenancy through community based support service

For more information on our Landlord Incentive Scheme please contact Maxine Kyprianou

Help us improve Gloucester City Council

Don’t include personal or financial information like your National Insurance number or credit card details.