Council tax revaluation: the facts

A council tax revaluation that would have calculated new payments for every home in the country is now indefinitely on hold with the government saying it will definitely not take place during this parliament.

In 2005 the value of every home in the country was set to be reassessed to calculate new council tax payments. The changes were set to come into play from 2007 and many people were concerned that any home improvements they carried out could have an impact.

So, what happened?

What were the facts about council tax revaluation?

If implemented, the plan would have represented the first time the nation’s homes had been revalued since the Council Tax was introduced in 1993. And then values were due to be backdated to reflect how much homes were worth in April 1991.

Since then house prices have increased considerably – and by different amounts in different areas of the country. This led to fears that the current system, where properties are placed in one of eight bands according to their value, was no longer fair.

Revaluation had been on the cards since 2000. It was set to be carried out by a government body called the Valuation Office Agency (VOA) and was expected to be the start of a regular cycle of revaluations.

It was thought that the exercise would be done largely by computer modelling and would consider factors such as the number of rooms, the floor area and the age of properties.

Some people were concerned that home improvements that increase the value of their property (such as a brand-new kitchen, bathroom or conservatory) might also increase the cost of their council tax.

But changes to valuation generally only come into effect when a home is sold, so those fears were groundless anyway.

A major improvement?

So revaluation is now in limbo, having been ruled out by the previous government and now by this one too. But it is still important to consider whether the improvements you have planned really would have a significant impact on your property’s value.

To get a feel for how a property is valued, visit the VOA website or consult the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors website.

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