Council Tax crisis mounts for Britons as millions worry about bills – key steps to take | Personal Finance | Finance
Council tax is a regular levy collected to help councils cover the costs of the services they provide. People will usually have to foot this bill if they are 18 or over and own or rent their home. Council tax can vary dependent on where a person lives, but as a regular cost, it may prove a financial burden.
She said: “With seven million worried about affording their council tax bills in the next year and council tax arrears reaching crisis point, urgent action is required to help people struggling to pay.
“The current system of council tax collection and support isn’t working for anyone.
“Without the permanent funding needed to provide 100 percent council tax support for those who need it, local authorities are taking the costly route of attempting to collect partial amounts from people who simply cannot afford to pay.
“This not only leaves councils with limited to no returns on the tax they need to fund vital local services, but risks a swift escalation of debt problems for households that are already struggling.”
Ms Elson highlighted the Government support available to people when COVID-19 first started.
This, she said, included temporarily funding councils to offer 100 percent Council Tax Support.
However, with millions of households now facing a “crisis” when it comes to finances, she has called for permanent support to be implemented.
Increased funding for council tax support in the long-term, Ms Elson added, could be a solution.
She concluded: “We hope the Government will build on its good work during the pandemic and bring forward the lasting reform needed to the council tax system in England.”
Those who are concerned about whether or not they can afford a council tax bill are encouraged to seek help.
Citizens Advice has said Britons should first reach out their their council straight away, to explain their situation and potentially ask for smaller instalments.
Others may benefit from free and confidential debt advice from a charity run service such as CA or the National Debtline which will be able to offer assistance on next steps.