Councils using ‘Intelligence’ to track down low EPC properties and fine £5,00015:08 PM, 29th March 2021
About 2 weeks ago 36
Readers of This forum will be aware of the efforts of both myself and Property 118 to expose the shortcomings of various Local authorities, and how Landlords are affected as a result of the actions of tax payer funded public servants.
The latest revenue raising scheme floated by Liverpool is astounding. The council want Landlords to pay Council tax on behalf of students. In the Liverpool Echo Councillor Nick Small is quoted as saying “Landlords renting to students dodge both Council tax and Business rates. Firstly landlords are not dodging any tax. The legislation grants students exemption. Furthermore Landlords do not pay council tax on behalf of other tenants. Secondly residential properties are banded under CT legislation and not Business rates.
A student union has immediately condemned this folly, as they clearly can see the “wood from the trees” and are aware that Students will be hammered with rising rents. When will the onslaught on the PRS end.
To those landlords who think that by being nice to the Local authority ,saying “yes sir” thank you for the landlord licence and the council is fantastic doing such a great job culling rogue landlords, I say wake up.
When any Local authority lies to introduce a scheme to fleece taxpayers, then ploughs on removing even the one month CT exemption for empty properties and now wants to impose the Council tax on landlords ,that Authority has lost all credibility.
The scheme would require major changes in Primary legislation and a redrafting on CT regs 1992.
Will residential properties be banded under Business rates legislation ?. If that is to be the case then Commercial tenancies would be exempt from their other scam ,ie the Selective Licence nonsense.
Without a doubt Students will face higher rents , unless the council wish to cap rents. This is an idea favoured by Corbyn and Co. What the Socialists cannot grasp however is that Price controls in any sector always lead to shortages. Look at Venezuela. Here in the UK, Before the market was deregulated by Mrs Thatcher, and I am not getting in to politics, simply stating the facts, there were shortages. In Sweden where rents controls are in force, There is little mobility as accommodation is scarce. Where does this constant interfering with the market stop.
It is incumbent upon every landlord now to hold their Local authority to account.
As I have previously made clear here, we cannot nor should we break the law. Landlords register your Liverpool properties especially those who have not done so yet, But Stop at that Point. Let us ensure that Liverpool redraft the entire scheme to ensure full compliance with the law.
Should this authority proceed to attempt to extort Council tax from Landlords, Perhaps we should join with our tenants and go on “council tax strike”. I will happily expand on this point at a later date.
In the meantime , I believe every landlord should now explain in detail the Regulations pertaining to Council tax and In particular the consequences for tenants of not paying council tax. Allow me to summarise.
1/ A liability order is not a CCJ, and does not affect credit scores.
2/An enforcement agent (Previously bailiff) cannot force entry and most goods are in fact exempt.
3/ A charging order cannot be used against a tenant.
4/ The threshold for Bankruptcy is now £5000 so a tenant owing £4000 cannot be made bankrupt.
5/ An attachment of benefits only applies to those actually on benefits.
6/ The Council could apply for an attachment of earnings, but if a tenant were to find himself self employed , this remedy would not apply.
7/ Lastly there have been a few examples of Councils applying to the court to imprison non payers for 90 days.
This is not common because of the Political ramifications, and for this to happen one would firstly have to be arrested by the enforcement agent and transported to court. The magistrates must then allow the defaulter the opportunity to make a payment taking in to account his statement of means. In summary few will ever be committed. It is our duty to make our tenants aware of the legislation as good landlords.
It is then the tenants choice having been made aware of the possible sanctions, if he or she decides that Council tax is excellent value for money. Unfortunately I believe many tenants may conclude that the Local authority and their demand, no longer are such a high priority. As responsible landlords, it is our duty to give tenants as much information about their Council as possible.
Bin collection dates, EPC Information, Emergency contact numbers and the dire consequences of failing to pay Council tax.
Let us show that these unwarranted attacks on the PRS, may start becoming very expensive.
Please Log-In OR Become a member to reply to comments or subscribe to new comment notifications.