Landlords who let out holiday properties as businesses may have to fork out as much as £1,000 more per year as the government closes what it describes as a tax loophole.
Currently, second home owners in England can avoid paying council tax by saying they intend to let their properties to other holidaymakers and so qualify as small businesses - thus eligible for business rates rather than the more expensive council tax.
There is little policing or enforcement of the existing policy.
However, Housing Secretary Michael Gove has announced that second home owners can only register for business rates if they can prove they let the properties for at least 70 days in a year.
Gove’s Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities says that the move follows a big rise in holiday lets in England, with some 65,000 residential units currently registered, up from 50,960 in 2019.
The majority of these have low rateable values, making them effectively exempt from paying business rates.
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