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Second Homes

Second homes are furnished properties that you own for your personal use but are not your main residence.

The Levelling Up and Regeneration Act allows local authorities to charge a premium on second homes.

Cornwall Council has agreed to charge an additional 100% Council Tax premium on second homes from 1 April 2025. 

View the webcast from January 17 2024

Proposed exceptions

The Government plans to introduce legislation before 1 April 2025. This will exempt certain categories of property from the second home premium:

  • Annexes forming part of, or being treated as part of, the main dwelling
  • Job related properties.  This exception will not apply to cases where:
    • someone chooses to have an additional property to be closer to work while having a family home elsewhere 
    • an individual is posted to a new location but maintain their previous address
  • Properties being actively marketed for sale or let will have a 12-month exception to the premium
  • Properties undergoing probate will have a 12-month exception to the premium after probate or letters of administration have been granted
  • Seasonal homes where year-round or permanent occupation is prevented, and
  • Occupied caravan pitches and boat moorings

We are currently reviewing all properties we have recorded as a second home. Do you need to tell us that a property is no longer being used as a second home and is now permanently occupied by you or someone else? If so, please complete our short online form. You will need your account reference number. You will find this on:

  • your latest Council Tax bill
  • the recent review letter sent to second home owners.

Job related accommodation

You may be able to get a discount if your home is left empty because you are required by your employer to move elsewhere for job related reasons.

Money off council tax for job related accommodation

Property being used as a holiday let

Holiday lets are valued for Business Rates if:

  • in the last 12 months the property has been available to let commercially for short periods of at least 140 nights; and
  • the property will be available to let commercially for short periods of at least 140 nights in the next 12 months; and
  • in the last 12 months the property has actually been let commercially as self-catering accommodation for short periods of 70 nights or more

Holiday lets will initially need to be charged Council Tax for at least 140 days. The property can only be assessed for Business Rates once all of the above criteria are met. 

The Valuation Office Agency will decide whether your holiday let should be listed for Business Rates or Council Tax. This decision is not made by Cornwall Council. 

If you meet the above criteria you can ask the Valuation Office Agency to move your holiday let from Council Tax to Business Rates.

Go to the Valuation Office Agency website

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