What is council tax and who should pay it?

Landlord responsibilities for council tax

If there is no one living in the property as their main or only home, then the owner of the property is responsible to pay the council tax.  You can find out more about council tax on empty properties on the council tax discounts and exemptions page.

As a landlord you are responsible for paying council tax if the property is designated as a house in multiple occupation (HMO). An HMO is a house or flat that is lived in by one or more people who are not part of a single household. This includes bedsits, halls of residence, hostels, nurses’ homes and homes shared by people who are not on the same tenancy.

You are also liable for the council tax if you own:

  • Residential care homes
  • Nursing homes
  • Property lived in by religious communities
  • Homes of ministers of religion
  • Homes provided for asylum seekers under the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999.

If you have a tenant or joint tenants who have a valid  tenancy agreement for the whole property they are responsible for paying the council tax.

Tell us about a change of tenant