The first council to change hands was at Castle Point, which covers Canvey Island in Essex.
Five Ukip gains left Tories one seat short of overall control.
Conservatives were left with 20 seats, independents with 16 and Ukip with five.
UKIP's successes in the local elections have raised the possibility of them winning a Westminster seat at the general election.
A year ahead of the general election, Ed Miliband's party is seeing only patchy support in areas it should expect to gain ground.
UKIP are likely to make Rotherham a key target for 2015 after a storming result in the local elections.