Not everyone pays the full amount of council tax – find out more about the many exemptions and discounts that apply in Glasgow.
What is council tax?
Council tax is a charge set by local authorities across the UK. Along with government grants, it pays for local services such as refuse and recycling collections, education and social care. Usually, people over 18 living in the property are liable for the tax, whether homeowners or tenants – this should be set out in the tenancy agreement.
The charge was introduced in 1993. How much you pay is based on how much your property was worth, when it was last valued in 1991 and all homes were placed in different valuation bands from A to H.
Council tax bills are sent out to households in March. You can pay in one go or in ten instalments. In Glasgow the average band D council tax rate for the year from April 2022 is £1,428.
Not everyone pays the full amount of council tax – some exemptions apply and some people receive discounts. The main discount is the single person occupancy discount, which reduces the bill by 25% if only one adult lives at the property, but there are many more.
Here is a list of the current council tax exemptions and discounts available to taxpayers in Glasgow. For full conditions of each exemption you should contact Glasgow City Council or check the website.
Single person discount
This discount reduces the council tax bill by 25%, if the property is solely occupied by one person over 18. You need to apply for the discount – find out more about the Glasgow City Council single person discount process.
All occupiers under 18 exemption
If all residents are under 18, they are exempt from paying the tax.
Student exemption or discount
Full-time students are eligible for discounts or exemptions on their council tax bills. They must be at a college or university in the UK or (an EU state) for at least 21 hours a week and for 24 weeks a year. Or, they must be under 20 on a non-advanced course of at least 12 hours a week lasting for three months.
Property previously occupied by students exemption
Unoccupied properties, which were previously home to at least one full-time student at a UK university, may be exempt – find out more.
Young people leaving care
Young people under 26 who have left local authority care may be eligible for a discount or exemption.
Disabled person’s reduction
This reduction applies if the property is the main residence of someone who is substantially and permanently disabled, whether an adult or child, and if it has been adapted or extended to accommodate their disability.
Long term hospitalisation exemption or discount
If the person occupying the property needs to stay in a hospital or care home for a considerable time, leaving it empty, the home is exempt. If just one adult remains in the house, there is a 25% discount.
Severely mentally impaired exemption or discount
Adults with severe mental impairments as a result of dementia, a stroke or a learning disability, for example, are exempt. If one adult lives with a person with a severe mental impairment, they are entitled to the single person 25% discount.
Resident carer discount
If a carer lives with the person they care for, the council tax discount applies. This is as long as they are not related, and the person receiving care gets certain disability benefits. Find out more.
Estate of deceased person exemption
If the council taxpayer has died, the property is exempt. This exemption works differently depending on whether a grant of confirmation has been made – find out more.
Prohibited from occupation exemption
This exemption applies if the property cannot legally be occupied – because it is dangerous or a crime scene, for example.
Major repair or structural alteration exemption
This exemption can be used if the property is undergoing major repairs or structural alterations to make it habitable.
Unoccupied and unfurnished properties exemption
New or existing properties are exempt if they are unfurnished and have been unoccupied for less than six months – after being continually occupied for three months or more.
Other properties, which are vacant for certain reasons, may also be exempt. However, some unoccupied properties are classed as second homes and liable for an additional council tax charge of 100%. Find out more.
Council tax energy efficiency discount scheme
People who fund loft and cavity wall insulation to their homes make be eligible for a one-off council tax discount, if the work was carried out during the past 12 months. You must provide proof of payment before the discount is applied.
Other exemptions and discounts
There are many other circumstances where you may be entitled to a discount or exemption on your council tax. These discounts apply to people including apprentices, members of a religious community and those in prison. Establishments including halls of residence and armed forces accommodation may also qualify. Find out more.
If you’re a Glasgow landlord looking for help with any aspect of renting out property, council tax included, contact us. We’d be happy to advise and tell you more about our services for landlords.