Probate properties and Council Tax

Owners of probate properties may be interested to learn that several local authorities are making changes to Council Tax benefits which apply to empty homes in a bid to bring in more income.
Councils including Teignbridge District Council are adopting these changes which have been titled: “Localisation of Council Tax Benefit and Technical Reforms to Council Tax”.
Due to come into force in April 2013, the new guidelines state that:
- a 50% premium will be added to homes which have been empty for 2+ years
- only 50% discount will now apply to unoccupied properties which are undergoing major repairs for a period of twelve months
- a full 100% exemption for empty properties will be reduced from six months to one month only  
How probate properties are to be dealt with seems to vary between local authorities but in most instances, they remain unaffected by these changes and continue to be exempt from Council Tax.  This seems sensible, given the amount of time it can take for probate to be settled.  However, it is always worth checking your specific circumstances with your local Council Tax department.

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