Housing: Older People

Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government written question – answered on 16th September 2020.

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Photo of Baroness Altmann Baroness Altmann Conservative

To ask Her Majesty's Government what assistance is available to bereaved relatives who are being required to pay council tax at full or double rate after being unable to sell an inherited retirement property that has been on the market while potential purchasers have been unable to view or move during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Photo of Lord Greenhalgh Lord Greenhalgh Minister of State (Housing, Communities and Local Government), The Minister of State, Home Department

When a property is empty following the death of its owner or occupant, and there is no other liable person, it is exempt from council tax for as long as it remains unoccupied and until probate is granted. A further six months exemption is then possible. Authorities have powers to provide further discounts where they consider that the circumstances merit it. Authorities can also agree alternative payment arrangements, such as deferring payment until the proceeds of a sale are made available. Potential purchasers who wish to move home can do so, and guidance on home moves is available (attached) at: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/government-advice-on-home-moving-during-the-coronavirus-covid-19-outbreak.

Government advice on home moving during Covid-19 (pdf, 281.7KB)

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