Council tax is a tax on domestic property, but some property is exempt from Council Tax.
You may not have to pay Council Tax, or you might get a discount.
All homes are assigned a Council Tax valuation band by the Valuation Office Agency.
The band you get is based on the value of your home as of April 1, 1991, and a different amount of council tax is charged on each band. The rate per band is set yearly.
Who do I pay my Council Tax to?
You pay your Council Tax to your local council, which then allocates the extra funding to one of several services.
Council members will allocate money to local education, leisure, police, firemen and other services.
Council Tax pays for:
- Police and fire services
- Leisure and recreation projects such as parks and sports centre upkee
- Libraries and education services
- Rubbish and waste collection and disposal
- Transport and highway services including street lighting and cleaning, and road maintenance
- Environmental health and trading standards
- Administration and record-keeping, like marriages, deaths and birth, and local elections
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Council Tax is a yearly bill, split into 10 monthly payments.
Most councils will allow you to spread the bill out over 12 months, though.
Paying the same amount every month will be easier for some households.
You can ask your local council if this option is available for you if you are struggling to pay. Find your local council contact details here.
What does your Council Tax bill tell you
Your Council Tax bill tells you the following things:
• how much you have to pay for the year
• how that amount has been worked out
• the dates you have to pay
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How to pay your Council Tax bill
Most people pay their Council Tax bill online.
Alternatively, you can normally pay in cash using ‘Paypoint’, ‘Payzone’, or ‘Quickcards’.
You can normally do this at post offices, banks, newsagents and convenience stores, but ring in to check if this option is available during the pandemic.
Your bill should tell you which other payment methods are available.
How to defer Council Tax payment
Andy Barr, the co-founder of www.Alertr.co.uk, told Express.co.uk:
“Ideally the local authorities would have the same approach as the majority of the banks do for mortgage holidays, i.e. online applications and an automated process.
“However, each authority is going to have its own rules and policies, and this is something we have seen regarding the business grants as well.
“It is clear that whilst the Government drives the overall strategy and plan, the individual authorities deliver and administer these plans in a way that they feel is most practical.
“The best thing you can do is go to them early if you are facing payment problems.
“Check the local authority website for the preferred form of communication at the moment and be prepared for long call times.
“Going to them before you miss a payment is always a stronger approach than going to them after you have missed a payment.”
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