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Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council

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Council Tax discounts, reductions and exemptions

council tax

A full Council Tax bill assumes that two adults live in the property. Depending on your circumstances you may be eligible for a Council Tax discount or exemption.

 

Single person discount

If you are 18 or over and live on your own you may qualify for a 25% discount.

Apply online for Council Tax single person discount

 

Disabled person reduction

If you or someone who lives with you has a disability, and your home has been significantly adapted to meet the needs of a disabled person, you may qualify for a reduction in your Council Tax Bill.

Apply online for disabled relief

 

Person in Detention

People in prison (except those in prison for non-payment of Council Tax or a fine) may be eligible for a discount or exemption.

Apply online for a Detention discount or exemption

 

Council Tax discounts and who they apply to

  • A 25% discount may apply if only one eligible person lives in the property
  • A 50% discount may apply if all the occupiers of the property are eligible for discount


If you live with someone in one of these categories you may be entitled to a discount

  • Full-time students (including student nurses), apprentices and youth trainees
  • People being looked after permanently in care homes, nursing homes or hospitals
  • People who are severely mentally impaired
  • People staying in certain hostels or night shelters
  • 18 and 19 year olds who are at, or have just left school
  • Care workers working for low pay, usually for charities
  • People caring for those with a disability who is not a spouse, partner, or child under 18
  • Members of visiting forces and certain international institutions
  • Members of religious communities (monks and nuns)
  • People in prison (except those in prison for non-payment of Council Tax or a fine)


Please contact us if you are not sure if your circumstances apply to one of these categories.

Note: You will need to print your form on completion. Please ensure you have a printer available.

 

Disabled person reduction

If you or someone who lives with you has a disability, and your home has been adapted to meet the needs of a disabled person, you may qualify for a reduction in your Council Tax bill. If your home is in Band A you can also apply for a Disabled Persons Reduction.

Download and Complete the Council Tax Reduction for Disabilities Application Form.

 

Empty properties and second homes

If you own an empty property or second home, the amount of Council Tax you pay will depend on the following classes.

Class A Furnished properties/second homes which have a restricted use e.g. holiday chalets  Full council tax
 Class B Furnished properties/second homes  Full council tax
Class A and B exception Liable person living in defined job related accommodation 50% discount
Class C * Empty and unfurnished properties  Full council tax
Class D * Empty and in need of or undergoing structural alteration or major repair Full council tax
Class E  Empty due to occupant living in job related armed services accommodation Full council tax
 Class F Empty properties which form part of another property that is in use e.g. an empty annexe in an occupied home Full council tax

* Empty and substantially unfurnished properties which have been so for more than two years are charged full council tax plus an additional premium of 50%.


Changes to discounts and exemptions
The Council has made some changes with regards to the discounts and exemptions on second homes and empty properties. From 31 March 2013 the following discounts and exemptions ended, and from 1 April 2013 the full Council Tax charge is payable.

  • The exemption for dwellings that have been empty for less than six months
  • The 50% discount for dwellings that have been empty for more than six months
  • The exemption for empty dwellings that require or are undergoing major structural repair work to make them habitable
  • The 10% discount on second homes and unoccupied furnished lets.


Introduction of an Empty Homes Premium
An additional 50% council tax charge, an Empty Homes Premium for properties that have been empty for over two years was introduced on 1 April 2013.

This means the owners of these dwellings will have to pay 150% of the council tax charge, except in the following cases, where the Government has said that an empty homes premium cannot be applied:

  • An empty dwelling which is the sole or main residence of a member of the armed forces who is absent from the property as a result of such service
  • An unoccupied annexe in a property which is being used as part of the main dwelling in the property.

If you believe your property may fall into one of these categories please contact Customer Service on 01642 397108.

 

Exempt properties

Some properties are exempt from Council Tax. If you own or live in a property described below you may be exempt from paying Council Tax.

If you believe your property falls into one of these categories please contact Customer Service on 01642 397108.

Exemption Class Empty properties exempt from Council Tax
Empty property owned by a charity (exempt for up to six months) (apply online using our form)
D Property left empty by someone who is in detention (apply online using our form)
E Property left empty by someone who has moved to receive personal care in a hospital or home
 F Empty property where the taxpayer is deceased and probate has not been granted – in some cases Council Tax liability transfers straight away to a beneficiary, see below *
FF Empty property where the taxpayer is deceased and probate was granted less than six months ago – in some cases Council Tax liability transfers straight to a beneficiary, see below *
G Empty because the law says the property cannot be lived in 
H Property waiting to be lived in by a Minister of Religion
I Property left empty by someone who has moved to receive care elsewhere
J Property left empty by someone who has moved to provide care for another person 
K Property left empty by student(s)
L A repossessed property
M Halls of Residence for students
N Property only occupied by student(s)
O UK Armed Force Accommodation
P Visiting Forces accommodation
Q Property left empty by a person who has become bankrupt and liability would fall to a trustee
R Empty caravan pitch or boat mooring
S Property only lived in by a person(s) under 18
T An unoccupied dwelling which is attached to another property, which may not be let separately
U Property only lived in by a person(s) who is severely mentally impaired
V Property occupied by a diplomat
W An annexe to a property occupied by a dependent relative of the occupants of the main home

* Please note, in some circumstances such as when a property is left to a beneficiary and the Will does not stipulate it must be sold; liability transfers straight to the beneficiary and the exemption will not apply.

 

Annexe reduction

New regulations prescribe a 50% reduction in the amount of Council Tax payable, on top of any other discounts, for people occupying annexes.

The occupiers have to be related to the person liable to pay the Council Tax of the main dwelling. This reduction also applies where the occupiers of the main house are using the annexe as part of their main residence.

Complete the Council Tax Reduction for Annexes Application Form.