Press release

Council Tax freeze has kept bills down for hardworking people

Average Council Tax bills in England have fallen in real-terms over the last 5 years.

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Council Tax

Average Council Tax bills in England have fallen in real-terms over the last 5 years, with almost two-thirds (64%) of town halls taking up the government’s Council Tax freeze offer in 2015 to 2016, Eric Pickles announced.

New official statistics have revealed the average Band D Council Tax bill from this April will be £1,484, or a change of just 1.1%, which is one of the lowest ever.

Of the 354 councils in England, some 228 councils have opted to freeze or reduce Council Tax bills this coming year.

Since 2010, this government has worked with local authorities to reduce Council Tax. This has cut bills in England over the past 5 years by 11% in real-terms. In contrast to the period between 1997 and 2010 which saw Council Tax increase in real-terms by half. This doubled the typical monthly Band D bill to £120.

The coalition government has provided extra funding for an unprecedented 5 years of Council Tax freezes which has saved £1,059 on the average Band D bills over this Parliament.

The Secretary of State said:

In the last decade the cost of Council Tax went through the roof but this government has been working to keep bills down to give hardworking people and pensioners greater financial security.

We have given extra government funding to those town halls that did the right thing and froze Council Tax for households, which has cut bills by 11% in real-terms, meaning people have more money in their pocket and are no longer facing the threat of soaring bills.

Further information

See the new statistics.

What we have done

Reducing the burden on council tax payers:

  • Council Tax in England more than doubled under the last administration, but our freeze funding and new Council Tax referendum rules have seen a fall of 11% in real terms since 2010
  • we have provided additional funding for councils to freeze Council Tax bills and ensure that millions of hard working families and pensioners have seen real terms falls in their bills
  • total of £5 billion was made available for 5 successive years of freezes – worth up to £1,059 for an average Band D household over the course of this Parliament; this has ensured that millions of hard working families and pensioners have seen real terms falls in their bills
  • abolished central government capping and replaced it with a power for local electorates to approve or veto excessive Council Tax increases.
  • we helped taxpayers budget more effectively by allowing payments to be spread over 12 months rather than 10
  • provided a 50% discount for annexes which are used by the owner/ tenant of the main building or occupied by a member of their family; since 1 April 2014, almost 2,500 householders have had Council Tax halved on their family annexes saving these households £1.3 million
  • made £6 million available in Council Tax relief to help people displaced from their homes because of flooding in 2013 to 2014
  • scrapped plans for an expensive and intrusive Council Tax revaluation in England which wold have meant soaring bills for millions of families and pensioners, and reined back the intrusive Big Brother property database and powers of entry for Council Tax snoopers
  • Order laid safeguarding people’s privacy and preventing unnecessary visits into homes or businesses for Council Tax or business rates valuations
  • abolished Council Tax (through 100% relief) for military personnel serving on operations

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Published 26 March 2015