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Council Tax band challenges

Posted by: , Posted on: - Categories: Council Tax

You can contact the VOA if you think your property may be in the wrong Council Tax band. Before challenging your band, it is important to know what to expect.

In this blog post, Council Tax Customer Journey Owner Richie Roberts explains the process.


There are two ways you can challenge your Council Tax band. Which type of challenge you can submit depends on your circumstances.

In certain situations, we are required by law to review your band if you ask us to. This is classed as a formal challenge and called making a proposal.

You can make a proposal if:

  • you have been paying Council Tax on your property for less than six months
  • the VOA has changed your Council Tax band in the last six months

You can also make a proposal to tell us that your property has changed. For example, if it has been demolished or split up, or your local area has physically changed. There’s no time limit on this – you can do it at any time.

Band reviews

If you think your band is wrong but you’ve been paying Council Tax for more than six months, you can request a band review. Band reviews are informal challenges, and you can ask for one at any time.

Supporting evidence

If you’re making a proposal, it’s helpful for us and your challenge if you provide supporting evidence. While it is not a requirement, it’s useful to bear in mind that we make decisions based on the evidence available to us.

For band reviews, you need evidence to support your challenge. The quality of evidence you provide is key; we have to see strong supporting evidence to accept a band review request. Without it, we will not be able to review your band.

Evidence to support a proposal might be details of any disrepair, or the costs of repairing your home, including schedules of work. You can send us photos, too, if it helps.

If your proposal is a banding challenge, or if you are requesting a band review, your evidence could be the addresses of comparable properties.

We accept the addresses of up to five similar properties in a lower Council Tax band than yours, as long as these properties are the same as yours in age, style, design, size and type. They will need to be in the same street or estate if you live in a town or city, or in the same village if you live in the countryside.

You can also use evidence from house prices if your property or similar properties were sold between:

  • 1 April 1989 and 31 March 1993 in England
  • 1 April 2001 and 31 March 2005 in Wales

You’ll need to go to your local library to get this information.

Find out more about evidence that supports your challenge.

Next steps

After you request a band review, we look at your evidence. From this, we decide whether to accept your informal challenge. We usually let you know if we’ve accepted your challenge within a few days.

We are required by law to accept all proposals.

Once you have submitted a proposal, or we accept your band review, we will tell you when to expect our full decision. You can currently expect to wait up to four months.

Challenges have three outcomes; your band can go up, down, or stay the same. We may also review the bands of similar neighbouring properties to check that they are correct, which means their Council Tax bands could be moved up or down, too.

If you submit a proposal and disagree with our decision, you can usually appeal it to the independent Valuation Tribunal. You cannot appeal the outcome of a band review.

We are an executive agency of HMRC, so we are bound by strict laws around taxpayer confidentiality. This means, legally, we are unable to share information about the other properties we have used to inform our decision – even if this information is available through other sources.

You can read more about challenging your Council Tax band on GOV.UK.

We welcome your comments about this blog below but cannot discuss individual cases. Please do not share any personal information. We will not be able to publish any comments that include personal details.

Please direct all queries about individual cases to our contact form.

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  1. Comment by Louise posted on

    What happens if you do not respond on my challenge within the time frame you have set out in your first response when I first made my challenge?

    • Replies to Louise>

      Comment by VOA posted on

      We aim to provide a decision on band challenges within 90 days, but sometimes cases can take longer. If you submitted a band challenge more than 90 days ago and have not received a decision, please contact us using

  2. Comment by MR Philip R Hampton posted on

    Hello, I would like to know why there are different bands in the same apartment block, i am in band E whereas others are in bands D

  3. Comment by Bill posted on

    When following a planning application a house is substantially enhanced is there an automatic review of the Band? Houses in my road have been substantially upgraded but appear to remain in their old band allocation.

    • Replies to Bill>

      Comment by VOA posted on

      Hi Bill. Thanks for your message.

      Properties that have undergone improvements will be given an improvement indicator. If improvements are sufficient enough to trigger a band change, this will not happen until the property is sold.

  4. Comment by DAWN MARGARET LING posted on

    how do valuation office work out each band how can i tell if there are different types of properties in my area that i am on the correct band

  5. Comment by Judith Partridge posted on

    I have a new property that needs a VOA council tax valuation so that I can pay council tax on it. I can’t find the form on the VOA website to fill out. Please could you send me the link?

    • Replies to Judith Partridge>

      Comment by VOA posted on

      Hi Judith. You'll need to contact your local council. They will arrange for your property to be assessed.

  6. Comment by BRK posted on

    How can i find out the reason for tax band increase

  7. Comment by Terry posted on

    What if I live in a remote village where there are no comparison

  8. Comment by VOA posted on

    Thanks for your message.

    Council Tax bands are based on the value of a property at a set date in time, known as the valuation date. If you think your band is wrong, visit