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EXCLUSIVE: Council tax re-banding policy starts to bite HMO landlords and tenants

council tax rebands

The impact of council tax re-banding in HMOs has started to bite as tenants around the UK are being handed huge bills.

Portsmouth seems to be a particular hot spot, where one Twitter user posted: 'I'm literally in shock. My house is being re-banded that it's six individual dwellings instead of one dwelling so we each have to pay council tax of �1,254.90 per annum instead of our landlord paying it and they're doing this to all HMOs in Portsmouth with an ensuite.'�

However, it's not just those HMOs with ensuites that are being referred to the Valuation Office Agency (VOA).

The HMOs and Council Tax Facebook group '� which now has 1,200 members '� contains posts from affected landlords and tenants, some with HMO rooms that simply have a lock on them.


Rather than paying tax on the whole property, each room can be reclassified as a band A, with tenants charged individually and only able to apply for a 25% single-person discount.

Portsmouth & District Private Landlords Association reports that at least 20 landlords have already been affected and is now polling members to better understand the extent of the problem.

The landlord group hopes to collect some tenant case studies to back it up and is waiting for a response to its Freedom of Information request to find out whether Portsmouth is getting more referrals than other cities.

silman portsmouth

'We wouldn't normally challenge an established rule, but this is a misapplication, and the processes seem inappropriate or inadequate, while there's no right to appeal the decision,'� chairman Martin Silman tells LandlordZONE.

'It would need the government to come up with a better definition of the underlying rule - but with all the current changes expected such as Section 21, the chances of that happening are pretty slim.'�


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