Hikes to National Insurance and soaring levels of inflation will see thousands of households worse off this year. With a cost of living crisis looming, it has never been more important to check that you are paying the right amount of council tax. Here’s one simple check you should do to make sure you aren’t overpaying.
Council tax bills rose sharply by a staggering five percent last year. This has put an increased strain on many Britons’ finances.
With another tax hike likely again this April it’s vital that you make sure you are paying the right amount of council tax.
Everyone should be checking that they are paying the right “band” of council tax, or you could be overpaying by hundreds of pounds a year.
Council tax is separated into bands based on how much your property was thought to be worth in 1991.
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If your property is similar or identical and they are in a lower band then this could indicate that you are paying too much.
You can use the government’s council tax band finder to discover how much your neighbours are paying here.
How can you challenge your council tax band?
If you think your council tax band might be wrong, you can submit a challenge to have it changed through the Valuation Office Agency (VOA).
You can also check roughly how much your property was worth in 1991 by using Zoopla and Rightmove’s house prices database.
- Your property’s use has changed – for example, if a part of your property is now used as a business.
- Your local area has been changed – for example, a new supermarket has been built.
VOA can also review your band if you’ve been paying council tax on your house for under six months.
If you have a different reason from the ones listed above and you’ve been paying council tax for six months or more, you can still challenge your band.
However, VOA will only be able to review your challenge if you provide enough evidence for why you think it’s wrong.