Last updated: 1 December 2023

Next review: 1 December 2024

Exemptions for occupied properties

You can apply for an exemption if the property is occupied and one of these criteria apply:

Property is a student hall of residence

The property must be mainly for students, and either:

  • owned or managed by a recognised educational establishment
  • owned or managed by a charitable body
  • the majority of the residents are students

Property is occupied by students, their dependents, school/ college leavers, or foreign language assistants ONLY

Please look under 'students' in the section above called ‘People who don’t count for Council Tax’, for details of how to apply.

Armed forces accommodation (UK) 

The property must be owned by the Secretary of State for Defence and provided as living accommodation for UK armed forces.

Visiting forces accommodation 

A person is a resident who would otherwise be liable and has a ‘relevant association’ with a visiting force from a country to which the Visiting Forces Act 1952 applies.

Property is occupied by people under 18 ONLY 

Liability for Council Tax starts at age 18. The property must be occupied by persons under the age of 18 only.

Property is occupied by severely mentally impaired people ONLY

Please see the section above called ‘People who don’t count for Council Tax’ for details of how to apply.

The property is not exempt if you’re the landlord of a house in multiple occupation (HMO). You are responsible for Council Tax, not your tenants.

Property is the main residence of a person with diplomatic privilege or immunity 

Please see the section above called ‘People who don’t count for Council Tax’ for details of how to apply.

Property is an annexe

The annexe forms part of a single property which includes at least one other dwelling. It's the sole or main residence of a dependent relative of a person who is resident in that other dwelling/s.

A dependent relative is either:

  • a person age 65 or more
  • a person who is severely mentally impaired
  • a person who is substantially and permanently disabled

Occupied by a person of diplomatic privilege or immunity

The property is the main residence in the UK of a liable person who has diplomatic, commonwealth or consular privileges and immunities.

This person must not be a:

  • British subject
  • British Citizen
  • British Dependent territories citizen
  • British national overseas
  • British Overseas Citizen
  • British protected person
  • permanent resident of the United Kingdom

The person must not have another residence in the UK.

When you apply, please provide written confirmation of diplomatic status from the embassy. It must state what class of diplomat the person is.