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Double council tax for empty homes in Haringey


Double council tax for empty homes in Haringey

Owners of long-term empty homes in Haringey will face a hefty increase in Council Tax, as part of efforts to address the housing crisis in the area. Starting from April 1, 2024, owners of properties left vacant for 12 months or more will be charged double their Council Tax, an increase from the previous threshold of 24 months.


The move aims to incentivise property owners to bring these empty dwellings back into use and alleviate the housing shortage in Haringey. Alongside this measure, plans are underway to implement a similar double Council Tax charge on fully furnished second homes and holiday lets, effective from April 1, 2025.


Haringey Council estimates that there are over 1,000 long-term empty properties in the borough, contributing to the wider issue of housing scarcity in London. Councillor Dana Carlin, Cabinet Member for Finance and Local Investment, emphasised the importance of addressing this issue: "We are determined to turn Haringey’s empty dwellings into new homes."


Highlighting the severity of the housing crisis, Carlin pointed out that the number of long-term empty homes in London exceeds half the households currently living in temporary accommodation due to homelessness. The council believes that charging higher Council Tax for unoccupied properties is a fair way to encourage property owners to either contribute more to preventing homelessness or find socially responsible ways to utilise their properties.


The introduction of the double Council Tax charge is expected to generate approximately £900,000 annually, providing additional resources to tackle homelessness and housing issues in the borough. With over a thousand properties falling under the category of long-term empty homes or fully furnished second homes, the measure aims to address the pressing need for affordable and quality housing in Haringey.

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