Uninhabitable property- council tax question

I'm just about to buy a small and as yet uninhabitable property. The council tax on it is low, about £50 a month. Now, because it is in such a state I was going to let the council know it was uninhabitable ad as I understand it that way I wouldn't have to pay any council tax on it until it was done up. However after being done up would the council reevaluate its worth and up the council tax?

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  • CISCIS Forumite
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    I'm just about to buy a small and as yet uninhabitable property. The council tax on it is low, about £50 a month. Now, because it is in such a state I was going to let the council know it was uninhabitable ad as I understand it that way I wouldn't have to pay any council tax on it until it was done up.

    £50.00 per month is exceedingly low - where is the property at ?.

    Most councils no longer award a 100% reduction on a property which is undergoing or requiring major works.
    I no longer work in Council Tax Recovery but instead work as a specialist Council Tax paralegal assisting landlords and Council Tax payers with council tax disputes and valuation tribunals. My views are my own reading of the law and you should always check with the local authority in question.
  • Thanks. So maybe I've been misled a bit. Its a band A in argyll & bute.

    Band Valuation Band *
    Council Tax Water Sewerage Total Scot Water Total
    A up to £27,000 785.33 126.78 147.12 273.90
    1059.23

    There is no public sewage so I guess I won't be charged for that.

    If I let the council know its being done up and apply for a reduction will they re-assess which band it falls into once it has been done up?
  • dancingfairydancingfairy Forumite
    9.1K Posts
    Check with your council whether they are still doing the discount but do note it does mean major renovation works - ie removing outside walls/roofs etc, not just some cosmetic work.
    Normally it's not the person doing the work who gets charged the increased council tax, it's when the property is sold on it's reevaluated.
    df
    Making my money go further with MSE :j
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    75/1200 :eek:
  • edinburgheredinburgher Forumite
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    A little G0ogle is a wonderful thing, you may actually owe *more* council tax.

    http://www.argyll-bute.gov.uk/housing/council-tax

    Double council tax
    If your property is lived in for at least 25 days in the last 12 months, then it is classed as a second home for council tax purposes. If it is used for less than 25 days in any rolling 12 month period, then it is regarded as an unoccupied property.

    With effect from 1 April 2014, properties that have been unoccupied for a period of two years or more will not be entitled to any discount of council tax and instead will be subject to an increase to their council tax charge by 100%. Properties unoccupied for less than two years but more than one year will also be subject to the double council tax unless they are being actively marketed for sale or let at appropriate conditions.

    These changes do not apply to purpose built holiday homes incapable of habitation throughout the year or job-related properties.

    It has been recognised that there would be some circumstances where this will cause particular difficulties for owners and the council will not charge the double council tax for a further 6 month period in certain restricted circumstances as follows:

    Properties owned by deceased persons after grant of confirmation has been obtained, but liability to council tax is still due by the estate. These properties will be exempt from the double council tax charge from 1st April 2014 to 30th September 2014 provided the property is actively being marketed for sale or let at appropriate conditions.

    Buildings owned by disabled persons where the disabled person has had to move into a more suitable property which better meets their needs. The property that they vacated will be exempt from the double council tax charge from 1st April 2014 to 30 September 2014 providing it is being actively marketed for sale or let at appropriate conditions and the owner is in receipt of middle or high rate Disability Living Allowance or Personal Independent Payment or where they receive a Disabled Banding Reduction at their new property.

    Buildings undergoing major repairs may be exempt from the double council tax charges for a single 6 month period commencing on or after 1 April 2014 and finishing before 31 March 2016 whilst major repair works are under way. This will only apply whilst these works are being actively carried out and provided that building warrants and planning permission where necessary have been obtained and there is a schedule of works. Also, if you have recently purchased a property which has been unoccupied for a considerable period of time prior to your purchase and you are intending carrying out major repairs to the property, you will be eligible for a 50% discount for 6 months from date of purchase. See further details under Discounts below.

    These changes were agreed at the council meeting of 8 August 2013 using the new powers introduced under The Council Tax (Variation for Unoccupied Dwellings) (Scotland) Regulations 2013 (SSI 2013/45). These changes are being made to provide an incentive to bring empty properties back into use. If this applies to you, the council’s empty homes officer can provide a range of help to you.

    Possible exemptions
    A 25% discount on council tax and water charges may be granted if there is only one adult (aged 18 years or over) resident in the property. You must let us know when your status changes.

    A status discount on council tax and water charges is available to households where all the adult residents are disregarded e.g. fulltime students, student nurses, apprentices, youth trainees, people receiving long-term residential care, severely mentally impaired and persons in detention.

    A second home is a property which is no one’s sole or main residence, but which is furnished and lived in for 25 days or more during the previous 12 months. If your property was not lived in for at least 25 days in the last 12 months, then it must be classified as an unoccupied property rather than as a second home.

    A 10% council tax only discount is available for second homes without time limit, and for unoccupied properties for a limited period. After a certain period, double council tax will apply.

    An unoccupied and unfurnished property which is not being actively marketed for sale or let will be eligible for 6 months exemption from council tax from the date last occupied (or from date first entered onto the council tax register for a new build property), followed by 10% discount for 6 months, followed by double the full charge after 12 months. If it is being actively marketed for sale or let, then the period of 10% discount is extended to 18 months before the double charge applies.

    A 50% Discount is available for purpose built holiday homes incapable of habitation throughout the year and for job-related properties for an unlimited time period. It is also available for properties under repair for 6 months from date of purchase if these properties are not eligible for exemption as more than 12 months has elapsed since the property was last occupied. These discounts do not apply to water charges.

    The Water Charges Reduction Scheme provides a reduction of up to 25% automatically to households in receipt of council benefit with 2 or more resident adults who are not already in receipt of status discounts.
  • Eek.
    The property I'm buying is a semi detached. My home is the other side. The condition of mine is good but starting to be encrouched on by the rot in the neighbours. Its been a holiday home for years but the condition has been too bad for them to actually stay in it for the last few years.We are talking floors fallen in and holes in the roof. Wet rot and woodworm and so on. Its a back to the walls job. It seemed like a good idea to approach them and buy it and get it done up to stop ours being impacted. The idea is to do it as a self catering to make some money towards paying off my mortgage faster. I have increased my current mortgage to make this investment. The house is costing me 25k and it will take us a couple of years to do it up as we are doing most of the work ourselves. Perhaps its just not viable if I'm going to be paying out 1k in council tax a year on top of trying to get the money together to get materials.
  • Francis63Francis63 Forumite
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    I understand that councils don't want empty properties in their district, but using someone who is willing to put a lot of effort in to bring an unihabitable property back to life as a 'cash cow' is unfair.

    You can only live in one place at a time, so why should you have to pay twice for the same services?

    It's no wonder that people think it's not worth the time and effort if they are going to be fleeced by the council as well.

    Those empty neglected properties are more likely to remain empty with this latest idea of charging double council tax on them, not less.
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