Council Tax discounts on Second Homes to be removed

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Council Tax discounts on Second Homes to be removed

In line with government guidance, Cotswold District Council’s Cabinet has removed a 10% discount on Council Tax for second homes and has also reduced or waived other exemptions.

At their meeting on 5 July, Cabinet members agreed to remove the current 10% discount on second homes. They also agreed changes to the Council Tax applied to various classes of unoccupied dwellings which will either reduce or remove exemptions (see notes below for details.)

The government has also given local authorities the power to levy a premium as much as 50% above the standard Council Tax rate for property which have been left empty for over two years. However, the Cabinet agreed not to introduce this measure until they had reviewed the effectiveness of current plans to bring such properties back into use.

Commenting on the decisions, CDC Cabinet lead for Corporate Resources, Cllr Barry Dare, said:
“The removal of the 10% discount on second homes will ensure that all home owners will pay their fair share of Council Tax. Additionally, revising most of the current exemptions on vacant properties should boost our plans for bringing more empty homes back onto the market. These exemptions have tended to provide an incentive for owners to retain empty properties, and this is just not acceptable, especially when property is in such short supply and many people are struggling to find affordable accommodation.”

The changes will come into effect on 1 April 2013, and are expected to generate an extra £1.26 million in Council tax - including a boost of about £120,000 in CDC’s income, and £50,000 for Cotswold parish and town councils.

Later in the year the Council will contact current discount and exemption recipients to explain how these changes will affect them.

Posted : 06/07/2012 10:44:50

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