Your Council Tax bill explained
Council Tax is your way of helping to pay for local services like education, parks and household rubbish collections.
The amount of Council Tax you have to pay depends on which property band your home is in - though your final bill will be adjusted if you qualify for any of the Council Tax discounts or exemptions, or if you qualify for help with your Council Tax because you have a low income. Your bill will also be adjusted if you are charged a premium.
Understanding your bill
- Your Council Tax bill explained (PDF 116KB)
- Council Tax bills with a Council Tax Reduction (the scheme that replaced Council Tax Benefit from April 2013)
- Your Business Rates bill explained
If you have a query about your annual bill, please browse these frequently asked questions.
- I had a Direct Debit set up for last year’s charge, do I need to set it up with you again for this year?
- My bill says I still owe some money. Why is this?
- My bill says I have ten instalments. Can I spread the bill over twelve months instead?
- I am moving soon, but the bill I have received is for the whole year. Do I have to pay it?
- I have contacted you with a change of circumstances, but the bill does not reflect this. Why?
- I received extra help with my Council Tax from the Benefits department for the last financial year, on top of my Council Tax Reduction (CTR) award, but it’s not on the bill for this year. Why?
I had a Direct Debit set up for last year’s Council Tax charge, do I need to set it up with you again for this year?
No. The Direct Debit will continue for the new financial year. The Direct Debit will automatically adjust to collect the new monthly amounts which are shown on your new bill - so you don't need to contact us or your bank to change the amounts yourself.
This could be because of one of the following:
- If you have a Direct Debit that collects on 15th or 25th of each month, and you have a twelve month instalment plan, the 15th and 25th March Direct Debits had not been collected when the bills were produced. They will collect as normal, so you do not need to worry.
- If you have paid the amount at the bottom of the bill after 3 March 2016, this will not be reflected, but you do not need to do anything else.
- If you have an agreement with the Council Tax department to carry a balance over into the next financial year and you do not pay by Direct Debit, you will be receiving a letter from us shortly with revised instalments.
- If none of the above applies to you, then you still have an amount outstanding that you need to either pay or contact us about.
Yes. Please contact us to arrange this.
- If you are moving after 1 April, please contact us to give us the details so we can close your account and give you a closing balance to pay.
- If you moved before 1 April, then you will not need to pay the first instalment on the bill, but you will still need to give us the details of your move so we can close your account and process any refund due.
We are currently working hard to deal with a high volume of correspondence, but may not yet have been able to process information provided to us recently. You will need to begin making payments as set out on the bill you have just received, but we will update your account as soon as we can, and send a revised bill as soon as possible.
I received extra help with my Council Tax from the Benefits department for the last financial year, on top of my Council Tax Reduction (CTR) award, but it’s not on the bill for this year. Why?
If you received an extra payment from the Discretionary Social Fund after making an application for the financial year running from April 2015 to March 2016, you would need to submit a new application for the new financial year running from April 2016 to March 2017, as the fund operates on a yearly basis. You can download the discretionary payment application form or contact the Benefits Team to ask for a form to be sent to you.