Changes to Council Tax discounts and exemptions - FAQs

  • Why are there changes to Council Tax discounts and exemptions?

    Every council across the UK has to put in place a new local scheme because of Central Government Policy. The Local Government Finance Act became law from 1st November 2012. The proposed local changes were agreed at the Full Council meeting on 19th December 2012.

    Council Tax Benefit is also being replaced by a new Council Tax Support.

  • What impact will the changes have on my bill?

    If you currently qualify for either a Class A or C exemption it will end on 31st March 2013.  You will be charged 100% for both of these from 1st April 2013.

    If you currently qualify for a 10% Long Term Empty property discount, because your property has been empty and unoccupied for more than six months, it will end on 31st March 2013.  From 1st April 2013 you will be charged Council Tax at 100%.

    Most properties which have been unoccupied for over two years will be charged an empty home premium of 50%. So, if your property has been empty for over two years you may be charged Council Tax at 150% from 1st April 2013.

    If you have a second home the current 10% disregard will ceased from 1st April 2013, you will be charged 100%

  • My property has been empty for over two years. How will this affect my bill from 1st April 2013?

    Most properties which have been unoccupied for over two years will be charged an empty home premium of 50%. So, if your property has been empty for over two years you may be charged Council Tax at 150% from 1st April 2013.

  • What help can I get to bring my long term empty property into use?

    Through our Empty Homes Service, you may be entitled to an interest free loan to help you renovate and reoccupy a property that is currently empty. 

    The Empty Homes Service is also able to give you help, advice and details of further incentives that may be available, whether you decide to retain or to sell the property. For more information, please telephone us on 01332 640326 or 01332 640325.

  • Can I claim the 25% single person discount instead of the 10% second home discount I currently receive?

    You can only claim the 25% single person discount for the property deemed as your main home.  If you feel your main home is in Derby City please let us know. Fill in our change of circumstance online form.

  • I own other properties outside Derby which I will still get discounts and exemptions for after 1 April 2013. Why won't I get the same in Derby City?

    Discount and exemptions affected by the changes in Local Government Finance Bill are subject to local decisions. The level of discount will vary from one authority to another depending on their local decisions.

  • Do I need to tell you that my property is empty now I have to pay 100% Council Tax from 1st April 2013?

    Yes, it is very important we keep your records up to date, as an owner you are responsible by law to notify us of any changes within 21 days of that change.

  • I am a landlord, what proof would you like me to supply when a tenant leaves or the circumstances change for my property?

    It is very important we keep your records up to date, as an owner you are responsible by law to notify us of any changes within 21 days of that change.

    We would like to know the exact date your tenant left, how long it was empty and the date your new tenant moved in. We sometimes need further information to help us make decisions so we may request copies of signed tenancy agreements. Proof of rent payments this could be:

    • bank statements showing the rent payment transactions
    • rent books
    • receipts
    • trading profit and loss accounts that you would supply to the Inland Revenue for your tax return. 

    A few landlords obtain photo ID from their new tenants when they're signing their new tenancies, we sometimes find this information useful and may ask if you have these.

  • What will happen if I refuse to pay?

    We will pursue any monies owed in line with the Council Tax Legislation.  Your account would go through the recovery process where a Court summons would be issued where you would incur costs.  After the Court hearing a liability order is obtained giving the Authority the powers to take further action against you to collect the debt.

    If you are struggling to pay we may be able to extend your payments over 12 months instead of 10. Apply for a 12-month payment using our online form

    If you have proven financial hardship which has been caused by these changes, you may be able to claim discretionary Council Tax relief.