Empty and unfurnished

All local councils have the power to vary the discounts that are applied to empty homes.

From the 1 April 2022 homes that are empty and substantially unfurnished will have to pay the full 100% yearly charges.

Prior to the 1 April 2022 home that were empty and substantially unfurnished could get a 100% one-month empty discount.

Cornwall Council Members decided to remove the 100% one-month empty discount from the 1 April 2022, to enable the Council to minimise cuts to frontline services, whilst making significant additional investment within Adult Social Care.

Additional premiums for properties empty for 2 years and over

From 1 April 2019, an additional amount of Council Tax (a premium) is charged when a property has been empty for two years or more.  This is unless it’s an annexe or you’re in the armed forces.

As this premium applies to the property, a change of ownership or tenancy will not affect the premium. Therefore, if you purchase or lease a property which has already been empty and unfurnished for two years or more, you will have to pay the premium.

  • Prior to 1 April 2019 - 50% for those properties which are empty for 2 years and over
  • From 1 April 2019  - 100% for those properties which are empty for 2 years and over
  • From 1 April 2020  - 200% for those properties which are empty for 5 years and over
  • From 1 April 2021  - 300% for those properties which are empty for 10 years and over

Cornwall Council members approved the premiums on empty homes on the 11 December 2012. The premium will only be removed by bringing the property back into use.


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