Second home owners could see council tax double in UK following huge law change

Houses in Bath

Second home owners in Bath could see their bills double

Sarra Gray

By Sarra Gray

Published: 27/11/2023

- 12:43

Second home owners could see their council tax bills soar

Those who own properties across Bath and North East Somerset could notice their bills jump up.

Councillors will decide this week whether to increase council tax for second home owners following a law change that gives councils more power.

The cost of council tax could double for those who own a second home in the area.

The increased tax will be specific for 'long-term empty' homes.

Houses in Bath

Properties in Bath that are left empty will charge owners


There are around 858 homes in Bath and North East Somerset that would be impacted.

If the tax increase was to go ahead, it would give the council a £1.84million boost per year.

The vote comes after the Levelling-Up and Regeneration Act was introduced last month.

This gives councils the authority to increase tax by 100 per cent on homes that are only sometimes occupied.

A report being considered states: “The recommendations in the report will either incentivise owners of second homes to sell them, thus returning them to local housing stock or increase contributions to the council and help fund vital services.”

It has become increasingly popular for Britons to buy a second home in beautiful parts of the country.

However, this can cause trouble in the property market as it leaves limited properties for those hoping to live there.

The report added this has a "negative impact" and "local residents [are] being pushed out of the housing market".

The "long-term empty" homes applies to those that have not been occupied for between two and five years.

They could be hit with a 100 per cent council tax premium.

River in Bath

Bath is a scenic area popular with second home owners


Homeowners who have properties that have been left empty longer could be charged even more.

Councillors will decide if the council tax change will go ahead in a vote on Thursday, November 30.

This comes as potential buyers were given a blow if looking for a bungalow.

The number of new bungalows built in the last year dropped by a huge 70 per cent.

Just 226 new bungalows were registered to be built between July and September this year.

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