Armed forces accommodation

Armed forces accommodation, barracks, messes and married quarters which are owned by the Secretary of State for Defence are exempt from council tax: 

If you live in Service Family Accommodation (SFA), you will usually pay Contribution in Lieu of Council Tax (CILOCT) instead of council tax.

Armed forces members living in privately-owned or rented homes

Unfortunately you can’t claim a council tax discount if you live in a privately owned or rented home and your partner is away in the armed forces. This is because the home is still considered their main residence for taxation purposes. This applies to all those in the armed forces throughout the country, in line with government guidelines. However you may be able to claim Council Tax Relief from the Ministry of Defence.

Council Tax Relief

If you are in the British Armed Forces and deployed on operations overseas, you may be able to get a tax-free payment to help with the cost of your council tax while you are away from home. This is called Council Tax Relief (CTR) and is paid by the Ministry of Defence, not by the council.

You can only claim CTR if you are liable to pay council tax, i.e. if your home is privately-owned or rented.

CTR is paid for each day that you spend at the overseas location where you have been deployed, including days out of theatre on rest and recuperation, and stops the day after you leave the area.

To claim CTR, go to your unit’s HR department after your tour ends. Take your council tax bill covering the period you were deployed, and a letter from the council confirming that you haven’t received any council tax discount for being on an operational tour.

Please contact us if you need a copy of either of these documents: 01925 443210 or

You’ll receive the Council Tax Relief payment as a lump sum on top of your salary.