LETTING & ESTATE AGENT

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Local authorities “being greedy” with council tax, say landlords

Local authorities “being greedy” with council tax, say landlords

The Residential Landlords Association (RLA) is calling on Ministers to end the “scandal “of local authorities charging council tax on bedsit accommodation.

A new report published today by the All Party Parliamentary Group for the Private Rented Sector has heard that many young people renting a room in a shared house are being stung for significant amounts of money by local authorities.

Guidance from the Valuation Office Agency means that many local authorities are now classing a single bedroom in a shared house as a separate dwelling for council tax, rather than the house as a whole.

By doing so, councils are able to claim funds under the Government’s New Homes Bonus scheme despite no new property having actually been created.

The RLA is calling a 50% discount on council taxes for rooms in shared homes in line with a similar discount introduced for so called ‘granny annexes.’

Commenting on the issue, RLA chairman Alan Ward said: “When young people are facing difficulties making ends meet, it is scandalous that some local authorities are applying full council tax bands to single bedrooms in shared homes, whilst using this to claim New Homes Bonus on homes that aren’t new.

“It’s time the Government stepped into to end this gross unfairness.”