Owners of empty homes will have to pay up to 300 per cent more council tax under new plans recommended by councillors.

Empty homes in Lewes will be charged twice as much council tax if they remain unoccupied for between one and five years, rising to four times as much for houses left unoccupied for more than a decade.

The plans, recommended by the council’s cabinet, would also see second home owners taxed twice as much from April 2025.


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Lewes District Council Deputy Leader Christine Robinson called long-term empty homes in the area “scandalous”.

The plans would come into effect from April 2025 but are subject to full council approval.

The changes come after new rules introduced by the government mean higher taxes can be introduced on empty and second homes.