How can I reduce my Council Tax Bill

Discounts and Disregards

The full Council Tax bill assumes that there are 2 adults (aged 18 or over) living in a dwelling. If only one adult lives in the property the council tax bill is reduced by 25%; this is known as Single Persons Discount. You can apply now by completing the Single Persons Discount Application form.

If there are no adults living in the property and you would like to apply for an exemption please contact the Council Tax section as detailed below.

In addition to this, there are certain groups of residents who can be disregarded altogether when counting the number of adults in the household. These are:-

  • Prisoners
  • People who are severely mentally impaired
  • 18 & 19 year olds who are still entitled to child benefit
  • Students, apprentices and people on Youth Training Schemes
  • People whose main residence is in hospital
  • People whose main residence is in a Residential Care home and receiving care
  • People living in hostels or night-shelters
  • Carers
  • Members of religious communities (i.e. monks and nuns)
  • School and college leavers
  • Members (and dependants) of Visiting forces or International headquarters

Properties that are unoccupied and unfurnished

Up to 31st March 2020, properties that are unoccupied and substantially unfurnished are entitled to a 100% discount for a maximum of 3 months.  From 1st April 2020 the 100% discount will apply for a maximum of 28 days.

Properties that have been continuously unoccupied and unfurnished for more than 2 years on or after the 1st April 2013, will pay an additional premium of 50%, therefore paying a 150% charge.  From 1st April 2019, the additional premium will be 100%, therefore paying a 200% charge.  Properties that have been continuously unoccupied and unfurnished for more than 5 years on or after the 1st April 2020, will pay an additional premium of 200%, therefore paying a 300% charge.  From the 1st April 2021 properties continuously empty for 10 years or more will pay an additional premium of 300%, therefore paying a 400% charge.

Second Home discount

If you have a second home, including a holiday home, no discount is available and the full charge will be payable.

However, if you are required to occupy either property as part of your contract of employment, you may be able to claim up to 50% reduction for your second home.   

Properties which are unoccupied and are undergoing or require major work or structural repair

Properties that are undergoing major work or structural repair may be entitled to 100% discount for a maximum of 12 months.  After this period, a full charge will apply.   

Annexes

From the 1st April 2014, a 50% reduction is available for people living in annexes provided they are related to the person liable to pay Council tax of the main residence.  A discount is also available for people living in properties with an annexe which is unoccupied as the annexe is being used as part of the main residence.

 

If you need further information on any of the discounts or disregards above, please contact us on 01543 464285 or write to:

Local Taxation and Benefits Section
Cannock Chase District Council
PO Box 28
Civic Centre
Beecroft Road
Cannock
Staffs
WS11 1BG

or alternatively email counciltax@cannockchasedc.gov.uk

Examples

  • For a property occupied by 2 adults there will be a 100% Council Tax charge.
  • For a property occupied by 1 adult there will be 75% Council Tax charge. (25% discount)
  • For a property that is unfurnished and where there are no adults resident there will be a 100% Council Tax charge, after 28 days.  In some circumstances there might be no bill to pay if the property falls into an exemption class.  If the property remains unoccupied and unfurnished after 2 years, a 100% premium will be added to the original charge.  After the property has been empty for 5 years this premium increases to 200%.
  • For a property occupied by 2 adults, one of whom is disregarded, there will be a bill of 75% of the Council Tax charge. (25% discount)
  • A property occupied by 3 adults, one of whom is disregarded, will attract no discount. There will be 100% Council Tax charge.
Exemptions

Some properties are exempt from Council Tax.

Properties that are lived in by:

  • Full time students
  • Severely mentally impaired people
  • A foreign diplomat who would normally have to pay council tax
  • People who are under 18
  • Members of a visiting force who would normally have to pay Council Tax
  • Elderly or disabled relatives who live in annexes and self contained accommodation

Unoccupied properties which:

  • Are owned by a charity (time limit of up to 6 months, after which there is a 100% charge)
  • Are left empty by patients in hospitals or care homes
  • Are left empty by persons in detention
  • Are left empty by someone who has moved so they can care for someone else
  • Are left empty by a deceased person (time limit for up to 6 months after probate is granted, after which there is a 100% charge)
  • Have been repossessed
  • Are the responsibility of a bankrupt's trustee
  • Are waiting for a minister of religion to move in
  • Are left empty by a student whose term time address is elsewhere
  • Are unfit for habitation (where occupation is prohibited by law)
  • Form part of another property which cannot be let separately
  • Are not furnished and need structural alteration or major repair work to render it habitable (time limit of up to 12 months after which there is a 100% charge)
  • A caravan pitch or houseboat mooring that does not have a caravan or boat on.

If you feel you are entitled to an exemption please contact us on 01543 464285 or write to:

Local Taxation and Benefits Section
Cannock Chase District Council
PO Box 28
Civic Centre
Beecroft Road
Cannock
Staffs
WS11 1BG.

or

email counciltax@cannockchasedc.gov.uk

Disabled Reduction

If you, or someone who lives with you, need an additional room, or additional facilities i.e. an extra bathroom or kitchen, or an extra space in your property to meet special needs arising from a disability, you may be entitled to a reduced council tax bill.

Additional Room

This would include a room (not a bathroom, kitchen or toilet) which is used mainly by the person. This could be an extension or extra room used for storing dialysis equipment, wheelchairs etc.

Additional Facilities

A second kitchen, or bathroom for the use of the person.

Space for wheelchair use

If there is sufficient floor space for a disabled resident to use a wheelchair (the wheelchair must be required by the disabled person for day to day living).

Before the reduction can be given the Council will have to decide whether:

  1. There is a resident with a disability who would find it impossible or extremely difficult to live in the dwelling without the extra feature.
  2. His or her health would suffer, because of the nature of the disability, if the extra feature was not available.

If you are entitled to the reduction the Council Tax bill maybe reduced to that of a property in the band immediately below yours. If your home is in Band A your bill will be calculated on 5/9 fraction instead of 6/9

If you wish to apply for a reduction please contact the Council Tax helpline on (01543 464285).

Alternatively you can email counciltax@cannockchasedc.gov.uk

Or write to us at:

Local Taxation and Benefits Services
Civic Centre
Beecroft Road
Cannock
WS11 1BG

Local Council Tax Reduction

Anyone who has a liability to pay Council Tax can apply for Local Council Tax Reduction, even if you already get a discount on your Council Tax i.e. if you live alone.

You can claim even if you work and have a low income.

In some cases, even though you have a liability to pay council tax you would not be entitled to Local Council Tax Reduction. For example when someone:
•    Has income which is too high to qualify
•    Is of working age and has capital or savings in excess of £6,000 (pensionable age level is £16,000)

To check if you are eligible you can use an independent, free and anonymous benefits calculator at Benefits calculators - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

To make a claim please visit our Online Forms page

 

Localised Council Tax Support factsheet .pdf (116.05 KB)

 

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