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Council Tax band challenges

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

An illustration of a green house with a garage, next to a smaller, pink house and some trees.

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.

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  1. Comment by Christine White posted on

    HI, Do I get any help towards my Council Tax? I am working 16 hours a week and on Universal Credit and I think my payments are too high.

    • Replies to Christine White>

      Comment by VOA posted on

      Your local council will be able to advise on any support available.

  2. Comment by John posted on

    I have submitted a council tax band challenge and provided some evidence back in May 2022 but I have not heard back since then, not even respond on whether my informal challenge was accepated. Who should I reach out to in order to follow up on my case?

    • Replies to John>

      Comment by VOA posted on

      Please visit for help with an existing case.

      • Replies to VOA>

        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 portiagingell posted on

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

  3. 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

  4. Comment by Darren Wilkinson posted on

    I bought a property last year and the vendor lied on the contract questions. There was no gas or electricity connected to the property. I have no paid for the gas to be connected but the whole property needs a new connection into the street because the building is out of regulation.

    The local council is charging me 400% council tax on the property and they have told me to contact you to temporarily remove any banding until the property is habitable.

  5. Comment by Isabella posted on

    We are the only house in the street paying band F, Everyone else pays band E. Our property is a 1920's semi, identical or very similar to the rest of the houses in the street. We have challenged this, giving addresses and valuations via email and all we got was a copy pasted response saying there was not enough evidence. What other evidence can we provide?

  6. 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 portiagingell 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.

  7. 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

  8. Comment by Neil posted on

    ive been living in my property for 5 yrs now and the rest of the street is in Band A, whereas im in Band B. the street is a mixture of terraced houses, flats and converted houses to flats. tyhere is only one property same as mine. what evidence do i give if only upstairs is same and in a lower band.

  9. Comment by Beverley Nagy posted on

    I bought a new build in 2002 at £75000. A 2 up and 2 down. Out of the 17 houses 4 are larger and the VAO banded all a C.
    The area around me are all band B but I was told because they are not the same age it doesn’t count. Could someone advise me because we are or was the only new builds in this area.
    Until recently there are some new builds near and a couple are band B. I own a terrace and they are semi detached, but similar size. Is this fair.
    Regards Bev

    • Replies to Beverley Nagy>

      Comment by portiagingell posted on

      Hi Bev. Thanks for your message. We cannot discuss individual cases.

      Comparable properties must be of a similar age to be used as evidence in a challenge.

  10. Comment by Mrs E Moore posted on

    Whyis my propertyin band e.Thereare9 properties in my Avenue. They vary in size Some are 4 bedrooms and 3 bedrooms. Some are rated at £1.991£1.770 £2.434 Some have Double garages others one and no garage in one. Please can you explain why?

  11. Comment by BRK posted on

    How can i find out the reason for tax band increase

  12. Comment by Subhash posted on

    I have appealed my case at same time as my neighbour. Just recently. And also have sent evidence on properties surrounding our neighbour hood. Mine came back not accepted but my neighbours they changed from D to C. I have proof of 26 other properties around mine to be in the band C, I have sent several messages to them but they insist that I appealed it in 1998. And that you can never appeal it agn. I have told them I have no evidence or paper work stating that what I have done. But they still insist on not changing mine. Even though my neighbours house is attached to mine. Where do I stand with this. As will challenge it.

  13. Comment by Keith Wilson posted on

    Hi I am considering doing the right thing as the property I moved into in 2020 I think has been in the wrong council tax band (too low) going back years to when property was previously purchased in 2002 by past owner . If I challenged this for ethical reasons will I be forced to pay increase backdated to when I moved in or just going forward as the error is with the VOA ?

    • Replies to Keith Wilson>

      Comment by portiagingell posted on

      Thanks for your message. Council Tax increases are not backdated in England. If your property is in Wales, you would be liable for a backdated bill.

  14. Comment by Karl Deakin posted on

    I rent a one bedroom flat in Milford haven, Pembrokesire. For some reason, it’s band C, £1500 per year. It’s the same as the 3 bedroom flat above me. How can this be correct?