Published On: Fri, Feb 17th, 2023

Council tax bills to increase by five percent for many but you can challenge your bill | Personal Finance | Finance

Local authorities can increase bills by up to five percent without holding a referendum on the increase, making it all the more important people check they are not overpaying. Households can get back payments if it turns out they have overpaid on their .

A person may even be able to get a 100 percent discount depending on their circumstances.

Britons who think their property may be in the wrong council tax band can request a reassessment from the Valuation Office Agency.

This comes with the risk they may be put into a higher tax band and pay more tax and there is no guarantee their bill will decrease.

If a person wants to find out if they are being charged correctly, they may want to start by asking their neighbours who have similar-sized properties which band they are in. An individual can also check online using a council tax checker tool on the Government website.


Then the person will need to find out what their home was worth in 1991, when the council tax system began.

People may be able to work out their property’s value from house adverts at the time, which they may be able to find in newspaper archives.

Then the person can check on the Government website which council tax ban their property should have been put into.

Requesting a council tax band to be reassessed can be done online by putting a case to the Valuation Office Agency.


A person may also want to check if they are exempt from paying council tax as this applies to several categories of people.

If all the occupants in the house are full-time students, they are exempt from council tax. Those who are staying in hospital or living in a care home are also exempt.

People who live alone can get a 25 percent reduction from their bill which could make a big difference over the course of a year.

In a situation where someone with a mental impairment lives with someone who is eligible for council tax, the household can get a 25 percent discount.

A person who lives with someone they care for, other than their spouse, partner or child, does not have to pay council tax.

People on benefits may also be able to get a discount to reduce their bill. Each council may have its own support scheme to help those on low incomes, so it’s worth checking with them to find out what help is available.

A person can find out who their local council is using a tool on the Government website.

They will need to provide their postcode and then it will say who their local authority is.

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