Council tax discount and exemptions for students

If you're a full-time student in York at a York college or university you can apply online for student discount or exemption.

apply for student exemption

To complete this form you will need:

  • address of the property including postcode
  • landlord name and phone number or email address
  • landlord or letting agents contact address
  • name, date of birth and phone or email address for each occupant of the property
  • name of educational establishment for each student occupant
  • course title, start date and end date for each student occupant
  • unique student ID provided by your college or university for each student occupant (also referred to as your 'student matriculation number')
  • move-in date for each occupant
  • previous address for each occupant, if in the York area

For a property to be fully exempt from Council Tax, each student in the house must register for council tax and apply for student exemption.

If you are a full-time student living in York but studying at a college or university outside of York see 'Studying outside of York' below.

Studying within York

It is not necessary to fill out separate forms for each student, the online and paper forms allow spaces for all occupants at the property. We'd prefer one application per property as information arriving separately may complicate or slow down the process.

To be able to qualify for the council tax student exemption you must be a full-time student. If you study at one of the following educational establishments, they supply a list of those enrolled to study:

  • York University
  • York St John University
  • York College
  • Askham Bryan College

Studying outside of York

If you study at a college or university outside of York download a Student council tax exemption and discount application form. Return this to us along with your student exemption certificate which must be obtained from your academic registrar. Please ensure that your term-time address in York is clearly marked on your application form and provide a contact telephone number in case we have any queries.

Processing your application

Once we have received your application we check your details or review your student exemption certificate:

  • if all occupants of a house are students we'll award a full student exemption
  • if there's an issue with any occupants we'll contact you

We aim to respond within 10 working days. However, at peak periods we handle a large volume of applications from the student population in York; we appreciate your patience at such times.

When to apply for discount

As soon as you tell us you're a student we can update your account so that you don't receive reminders for non-payment of your council tax.

Tell us before October so we can put a temporary hold on your Council tax bill which will stop reminders and summons letters being sent to you (we can only do this if all the occupants of a house are students and all have completed the online request).

Note that we normally receive the lists from universities and colleges during October and November so we can't properly process your details until then. When the lists have been received and your details are checked we'll issue an exemption notice, as appropriate.

We cannot take details of your move into your new property more than 14 days in advance.

If you receive a summons

As council tax is a charge on the property, a single bill is issued to the property for all liable parties. In the case of full-time students this should show an exemption for the duration of your studies.

However, you will only be exempt if all the occupants of a house are students and all have applied for a discount or exemption.

If you have received either a reminder or a summons contact us to check the status of your discount application.

Properties occupied by both students and non-students

The full council tax charge is based on two liable people living in a property. Properties occupied by a mix of students and non-students may still be eligible for a discount, dependent on the circumstances at the property. For example:

  • if a full-time student is sharing a property with a severely mentally impaired person; they would be entitled to a full exemption
  • if a full-time student is living with an apprentice, then they may qualify for a 50% reduction in their council tax bill
  • if there are two people resident but one is a full-time student, then you can apply for a 25% discount for the student resident

Contact us to check if there what discounts are available and how to apply for them.

Renewing council tax exemption

You need to apply for council tax exemption every year. You may have changed your address or there may be different occupants living in a property.

In-between courses

Students only qualify for exemption whilst registered as undertaking studies, therefore the period between courses does not qualify and you will need to pay your council tax.

Moving house

You need to notify us as soon as possible if you move:

  • Any incoming students must complete a 'move in' form and register for student exemption
  • Any students moving within York need to complete a 'move within' form and register for student exemption at the new address
  • Any students moving out of York need to complete a 'move out' form

End of study

If you are no longer a student contact the Council Tax Team with the date your studies ended and provide confirmation from your course provider.

Foreign students and their families

If you are a full-time student and your spouse or partner is joining you, if their visa states that they have no recourse to public funding and your children are under 18 years old then an exemption may apply.

In order for us to determine this, please send or email a copy of your spouse or partner’s passport, showing their visa.

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