Why do I need to pay council tax and what does it pay for

Council tax is raised on all domestic property in the UK and it is calculated based on the value of a property in 1991. Council tax is usually payable by the occupier of a property, subject to various exemptions. Exemptions or deductions might be granted dependent on personal circumstances of the occupant or the type of residence.

The amount of council tax payable on a particular residential property depends on the notional value of the property at the 1991 valuation date. The higher the value, the more tax levied. Bands vary from Band A (up to £40,000 value in 1991) up to Band H (over £320,000 in 1991). Approximately 25% of a council’s revenue is generated through the imposition of council tax.

Council tax pays towards the following services;

  • Library services and certain classes at Further Education Colleges
  • Police and fire service contributions
  • Street cleaning and waste collection
  • Water and sewerage services (in Scotland)
  • Maintenance and upkeep for public spaces, parks, galleries, theatres, museums, leisure centres and community swimming pools and museums
  • Social services
  • Schools, education and youth services: In England, schools are funded by the central government’s Dedicated Schools Grant but additional services might be paid for by the local authority.
  • Council Housing & Housing Benefits
  • Street lighting and non-trunk road and bridge maintenance
  • General administration and record keeping (eg Registry of births and deaths, marriages, etc)

In some instances local authorities offer deductions or exemptions. For example, if one adult occupies a property a 25% deduction may be available upon application. Alternatively, where a property remains vacant for a period of time, some local authorities are now applying a punitive council tax multiplier aimed at ‘incentivising’ owners to let out vacant property.

Failure to pay council tax is a criminal offence.

Related articles:

Related article
Proud supporter of We Love Bracknell General news

Proud supporter of We Love Bracknell

Welcome to the new look Duncan Yeardley! General news

Welcome to the new look Duncan Yeardley!

We are recruiting for an Accounts Assistant! General news

We are recruiting for an Accounts Assistant!

FInd out how much your property is worth